Debate: Do we want Leeds United to win promotion?

The possibility of Leeds United returning to the Premier League grows stronger by the week, with the Elland Road club currently placed third in the Championship and playing good football, but do Manchester United fans want our historic rivals to win promotion this season?

Here, we explore that question, discussing the positives and negatives attached. We begin with a word from former United striker Andy Ritchie, who famously scored a hat-trick against his future club on this day in 1979! Check out what he has to say on a discussion that could grow and grow…

Andy Ritchie:
“You know, I would like Leeds to win promotion. I know that I played for them and it was about four or five years after I left United, but I think everybody would love to see them playing in the Premier League – I really do. I think it would be good for the league. Listen, everybody would want their travelling fans to come to the ground, too, because they’ll make a few bob out of them!”
Leeds are currently third in the Championship and chasing a place in the Premier League.

A knowledgeable triumvirate of Old Trafford season-ticket holders from the club have their say…

United Review editor, Paul Davies:
“Part of me was glad when City came back from the depths of League Two to put the Manchester derby back on the fixture list – although, admittedly, that’s not worked out so well for us in recent years. And it’s kind of the same with Leeds, I guess. Do I miss them in the Premier League? Not especially. But would I rather play them at Old Trafford and visit Elland Road than some of the other clubs in contention to come up? Absolutely. It’s a cautious yes from me.”

Features editor, Steve Bartram:
“Yes, definitely. In the strangest of ways, like when Scratchy finally offed Itchy, I’ve missed them. Beyond games against City, Liverpool, Spurs, Chelsea and Arsenal, so many domestic fixtures feel the same. Facing Leeds is a proper, old-fashioned rivalry based on mutual distaste, without any added complications. For me, trips to Elland Road should be part of the calendar and I’d welcome them back with open arms.”

Club reporter, Joe Ganley:
“Yes. Games at Elland Road are arguably even more intense than our trips to City or Liverpool, and Yorkshire is severely under-represented in the Premier League, given the strength of its football culture. Leeds’s return to the top flight would potentially make things more difficult for United on the pitch – Leeds love beating us more than anything – but these fixtures are what make football special. Plus, there’s an added factor: Marcelo Bielsa. He’s one of the most fascinating managers of his generation, and his sides play bold, brave, entertaining stuff. As a football fan, I’d be intrigued to see him in the league.”
Marcelo Bielsa.
Marcelo Bielsa spies a look at the action from the touchline at Elland Road.

It is fair to assume that Ander Herrera would embrace and enjoy the prospect of facing Leeds, who we last faced in the Premier League way back in February 2004. The Spaniard has become a student of our club’s history and fully understands the meaning of such fixtures.

Our popular no.21 previously played under the tutelage of maverick manager Bielsa during their time together at Athletic Club Bilbao. Ander has often spoken positively about the Argentinian’s passionate coaching methods, so a reunion in the English top flight would presumably be welcomed.

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