Jesse Marsch makes plea for Jack Harrison to stay after Leeds revel in ‘ugly’ Accrington tie
If he is on his way out of Leeds United, Jack Harrison signed off in the best way possible. Jesse Marsch, though, believes that is no foregone conclusion.
Leicester City want to sign Harrison before the transfer window closes on Tuesday, and as Marsch’s side negotiated an awkward FA Cup tie at League One Accrington, it was clear just why.
The winger opened the scoring with a terrific low drive after Patrick Bamford had touched the ball into his path, and then created his team’s third goal with a burst down the left, crossing for Luis Sinisterra to sweep in.
Oh that is brilliant Jack Harrison 👏
His second goal of the season ⚽️ #BBCFootball #BBCFACup pic.twitter.com/0lkbtqTCCE
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) January 28, 2023
As Marsch put it, Harrison is “one of the most incredible people I’ve ever coached”. He will have a key role to play in keeping Leeds in the Premier League, and in their next FA Cup adventures, should Leicester be thwarted.
“We like him here,” Marsch said. “We want to keep him. He’s performing really well. He’s got flexibility in the way he plays.
“You know, when things start circulating, it’s never so easy to just stay focused on what your job is, but I’ve tried to have open dialogue with him and be very honest with him and we have that kind of relationship.
“And then, you know, he does like it here. That’s all I can say. It’s not like he’s itching to leave. So you know, when I see him now, I see a guy who’s clear and confident and a guy has nothing’s going to faze him. I thought it was really good performance – and what a great goal.”
That goal, midway through the first half, eased Leeds concerns of an FA Cup upset. They have fallen victim to too many of those over the past 15 years; Histon, Rochdale, Sutton United and Crawley have all knocked them out in recent memory, and Cardiff City came within seconds of doing so earlier this month.
There were moments of discomfort in east Lancashire; Accrington had more shots at goal in the first half, and should have equalised early in the second when Harvey Rodgers, a Leeds fan, skied his shot when left unmarked at the far post from a Rosaire Longelo cross.
Some of the discomfort was physical too; Accrington midfielder Liam Coyle earned a booking for clattering into Junior Firpo, which sparked a confrontation on the touchline between Marsch and Jimmy Bell, Accrington’s assistant manager. Not that the American seemed too bothered by it.
“We weren’t displeased with the fact that it was an ugly game at times,” Marsch said. “And we just knew we had to do what we wanted to do to take care of business. So we did that and now we’re able to move on.”
Leeds’s quality ultimately ensured they were able to take care of business. Georginio Rutter, signed for a club record £36 million from Hoffenheim, had a strong debut, despite rolling wide a good early chance, while Sinisterra was a constant threat as he made his first start since October, having recovered from a foot injury.
The Colombian was denied a first-half goal when his shot on the turn was brilliantly turned on to the post by home goalkeeper Toby Savin, and lifted the ball over the bar when he should have squared for Rutter in the second.
The post is still shaking 😬
But did @SavinToby of @ASFCofficial get a touch? 😲#EmiratesFACup pic.twitter.com/OjYJHrKeIj
— Emirates FA Cup (@EmiratesFACup) January 28, 2023
Once defender Firpo had scored his first for Leeds by finishing a fine counter-attack by exchanging passes with Bamford and rolling into the corner, the game was up for their hosts. Sinisterra added a third, before Accrington had the last word, with 18-year-old substitute Leslie Adekoya turning in his first senior goal.
For an hour, it had been tough for Leeds, something their hosts must now use in their own fight against relegation from the third tier. “We believe we can compete against anybody,” said Accrington manager John Coleman. “We’ve always had this mentality that just because someone has a better car than you and lives in a better house, it doesn’t mean they’re going to be better than you on a Saturday.”
Accrington Stanley vs Leeds United: As it happened
Patrick Bamford speaks to Match of the Day
We started slowly, Accrington made it difficult. After we got the first goal, we got into the game. Second half, we were much better.
Today I was just missing a goal. I've been building the minutes up slowly, gradual progress.
The FA Cup has taken pressure off and given some confidence. We've been growing with each performance, it's just about turning draws and losses into wins
Adekoya's last-gasp goal
His first touch of the game and he's on the scoresheet! 👏
18-year-old Leslie Adekoya has his first Accrington goal, and it's against a Premier League side!
He won't forget that one 🤩#BBCFootball #BBCFACup pic.twitter.com/Rba8ZMXetz
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) January 28, 2023
Full time: Accrington Stanley 1 Leeds 3
Accrington Stanley will not be making history today, but neither team will leave the ground in truly dark spirits. The home side distinguished themselves well, and pulling one back under fire was an added bonus for a team that, as Coleman stated before the match, is more firmly focused on the league.
Leeds will be absolutely over the moon: this is only their second win in ten, and an injection of confidence is badly needed at Elland Road. So too is a return to the FA Cup fifth round.
90+4 min: Accrington Stanley 1 Leeds 3
Kristensen sends the ball towards Aaronson, struggling down the right. The ball is forced out, and Kristensen can take the throw high up the pitch.
Stepping back for a long one, the indefatigable Hamilton, who has been full of guts and vigour today, springs forward to head the ball back out.
Adekoya picks up a yellow for knocking down Kristensen, gifting Leeds a freekick just to the right of the box. It's tentatively taken, and Savin will concede no more.
90+2 min: Accrington Stanley 1 Leeds 3
Joseph is involved early, picking up the ball on the edge of the box, but he quickly comes under fire from Pickles, who boots the ball upfield.
Adekoya has another weighty chance, picking up a quality cross from Leigh, but his header sends the ball just over the crossbar.
90 min: Accrington Stanley 1 Leeds 3
Harrison comes off for Joseph, just before added time is announced: four minutes to play.
88 min: Accrington Stanley 1 Leeds 3
Leigh bustles past the swarming Leeds defence to loop the ball rightwards into the box, but again, he's undersupported, and Leeds play the ball out of danger.
He's next involved in chopping down Aaronson, conceding a freekick just inside the Leeds half.
86 min: Accrington Stanley 1 Leeds 3
A final change for Accrington Stanley, Whalley off for Josh Woods. He sprints on to join in on Accrington's freekick, and immediately gets in the mix sprinting to pick up a long ball that goes streaking to the right corner. He sends in a high, well-timed cross to the box, but there's no one there to scoop up the chance.
84 min: Accrington Stanley 1 Leeds 3
Savin once again springs in to action to keep out Rodrigo, tumbling in from the right. Roca isn't quick enough to pick up the scraps.
Those Accrington substitutes: Tharme, Pressley, McConville and Longelo off for Jack Nolan, Seb Quirk, Aaron Pickles (on debut, which is faintly remarkable), and Adekoya.
GOAL!!! Accrington Stanley 1 Leeds 3
No chance to even tell you he'd been substituted, but with his first touch, Leslie Adekoya scores for Accrington Stanley!
Meslier has a horror show, spilling the ball after his first save, and Adekoya is lingering to receive a clever cross by the far post.
Let the fightback commence...
80 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 3
Kristensen sprints to the right edge of the box and has a whipped shot on goal that Savin stretches to save magnificently.
Greenwood sends the corner in, but can't find Llorente. Accrington Stanley smother the threat in the box.
78 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 3
Leigh sends a shooting ball looking for Hamilton on the run, but tangled up with a Leeds player, he can't quite get on the end of it.
On the sidelines, Accrington ready their changes.
75 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 3
Bamford is involved in heady play again, tiptoeing into the box before setting up Rodrigo. He can't get past Savin, however.
That'll be his last action of the day, as he, Koch, and Rutter swap with Sonny Perkins, Diego Llorente, and Brenden Aaronson.
73 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 3
Longelo runs out of steam battling Rutter at the corner, and Rutter is able to usher the ball out for a goal kick.
At the other end of the pitch, Bamford goes hunting for his first goal, forcing Savin into a save first after pulling down a crafty long diagonal ball, then finding the side netting.
An update from a breathless Mike Whalley
That should be that now, and Luis Sinisterra will be pretty relieved to have got himself a goal, having wafted a shot over the bar a few moments ago when the score was 1-0. Jesse Marsch, at that point, had the exasperated look of a man who had just seen his favourite piece of pottery crash to pieces on the floor. But when Sinisterra was replaced by Rodrigo, he got a big hug from his boss, so clearly all is forgiven.
70 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 3
The last thing that Accrington fans may wish to see: Sinisterra is swapped for Leeds' top scorer, Rodrigo.
GOAL!!! Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 3
Well, that was quick.
Sinisterra rightly engraves his name on the scoreboard, after Harrison huffs and puffs onto a ball sent in ahead of him on the left. Making it to the box, he cuts to a running Sinisterra who has to do very little indeed.
GOAL!!! Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 2
Firpo scores his first for Leeds, after teaming up cleverly with Bamford: from the left, he sets up Bamford to hold the ball, turn, and pass forward to a running Firpo, who plays an immaculate shot!
Extremely well-worked, by Bamford in particular. This may mark the start of the 'Accrington Stanley, who are they?' spell of play.
Junior Firpo has his first Leeds goal! 👏
That move by Patrick Bamford 🤤 #BBCFootball #BBCFACup pic.twitter.com/gOg9H1erVG
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) January 28, 2023
64 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Longelo is tumbled by Firpo on the line, breaking down the right, but not all of his team-mates are firing. Fatigue could be setting in, as anticipated, and Sinisterra can get away easily to skirt past defenders on the run. He overeggs a shot on goal, rather than setting up a well-placed Rutter, and finds only the fans behind the netting.
62 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Jesse Marsch on the sidelines seems baffled by some of the referee's decisions, but Leeds get their throw in the end and can whistle the ball into the box. Kristensen pulls off a clever header which lays the ball down for Bamford streaking into the box. The angle is inopportune, but he gets the shot away all the same.
60 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
There's a sense this match could boil over, as it gets increasingly cheeky.
Accrington Stanley have the freekick now, just over the halfway line, and the ball is lifted long on the diagonal. It's a little overcooked, and Leigh can't reach it before the ball skitters out of play.
58 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Roca floats the ball from the sideline into the box, and Rutter attempts an overhead kick with the scraps, but ends up fouling his close-marking defender.
Bamford goes questing for the next high ball, streaking through, but he's pinned back by Rodgers, almost bear-hugging him. No Var today, lads. As much as he remonstrates, the opportunity for a penalty is waved away.
55 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Accrington Stanley fans in the stands go on banging the drum, looking to inspire fightback from their team 49 places in the football pyramid behind their leading opponents. There's spirit on display, but Leeds are looking livelier earlier on in the second half.
Watch: Rodgers' unbelievable miss just after the whistle
Look away now Accrington Stanley fans 😬#BBCFACup #BBCFootball pic.twitter.com/0kniW6xCDe
— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) January 28, 2023
52 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Rutter is back on his feet, and play can restart.
Tharme sets up for one of his trademark long throw-ins high up the pitch, which barrels in like a corner and slips through Meslier's hands. Rodgers, again, has the chance, but he can't get it on target.
50 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
The referee halts play moments after a Leeds freekick after Hamilton skittles Rutter on the run. He skids over him, and Rutter receives a concussion check on the pitch. No freekick for Leeds, however.
48 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Sinisterra gets free down the left, checking for Roca, but he's overturned from Coyle, who directs the home attack up the field.
Another agonising moment for Rodgers, after Leeds leave the gate unlocked, and the attack floods forward. Meslier comes out of his goal to tangle with Leigh, and Rodgers can't properly target goal. Leeds will have to refocus to avoid a dangerous levelling.
46 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Rodgers nearly has a spectacular chance against the club he supported as a child, picking up a flicked ball from the back of Tharme's head. He's ideally poised to leather it past Meslier, but he clears the crossbar instead.
It's now bucketing it down, which should prove uncomfortable for those in the uncovered away stand.
No changes for either team at the restart.
Accrington club captain Seamus Conneely speaks to Match of the Day
Out injured at present, his thoughts on the first half:
I think we played very well, I think we started very well.
You can see Leeds' quality, they grew into the game.
I think the goal really settled them and they finished the half the stronger.
Mike Whalley's half-time thoughts
An entertaining first half, with both sides going for it, and a bit of bite between the benches too. What more could you want from an FA Cup tie? Leeds have begun to impose themselves, but Accrington are by no means out of this. Georginio Rutter has looked useful so far; he probably should have scored early on, and almost had a goal before half-time. Luis Sinisterra has been the real danger man, though – a terrific effort that hit the post, and he is causing problems down the left flank.
Half-time: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Harrison's goal was a cut above, and doesn't tell the story of what came before it, but since going ahead, Leeds have looked increasingly confident. Accrington Stanley will have to come out guns blazing, improving on their strong first-half showing. They have a good chance of doing so, but fatigue may come into play, after going into extra time midweek against Boreham Wood.
45 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Tharme and Bamford have a brief full and frank exchange of views, after Tharme tries to unravel his shirt. But there's no intervention, and its Pressley who wins a freekick for Accrington high up on the right after apparently being hacked down. Looks very soft from here, but Accrington gain little from the fracas in the Leeds penalty area, so there's no real cause for griping.
One minute added on.
43 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Bamford has been a permanent nuisance for Accrington today, now buzzing around Tharme looking for scraps.
Harrison picks up the ball on the left, and trips down the wing before flying the ball rightwards. Kristensen catches it on the edge of the box and shoots it across the face of goal. Savin edges the save, there being no Var to overturn the decision to gift him his ensuing goal kick.
A key clarification from Mike Whalley
I am no relation to Shaun Whalley – at least as far as I know. There's a village called Whalley not too far from here, which I think is where the name comes from. It was certainly noted by the media steward when I picked up my press pass pre-match.
40 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Coyle picks up the first yellow card of the match, tumbling Firpo with a heavy boot-up challenges that throws him judo-style over his shoulder.
Forcing play upfield, Leeds win their third corner of the match, but Accrington Stanley defend manfully, sending the ball flying upfield.
38 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Sinisterra skitters into the box, before Astley puts in a clever challenge; Sinisterra can play the ball briefly forward to Bamford skidding into the box. Savin makes a quick fingertip save as Bamford goes down, but his protestations for a penalty are immediately waved away.
36 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Accrington are forced into some late heroics to keep out a peppy Leeds chance from Rutter. There's more chaos a moment later after Coyle overturns Bamford on the edge of the box – but wins the ball fairly.
Oh that is brilliant Jack Harrison 👏
His second goal of the season ⚽️ #BBCFootball #BBCFACup pic.twitter.com/0lkbtqTCCE
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) January 28, 2023
33 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Accrington Stanley still look peppery, and Leeds remain unable to flood up the pitch freely. But Bamford once again gets away, running leftwards to pick up a straight ball before running into the box to take his shot.
The angle doesn't favour him, and it nestles comfortably in the side netting.
31 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Astley weaves away from two Leeds players, and besieged, still managers to set up Longelo. But fighting off the buzzing swarm of travelling players, he concedes a freekick.
Bamford picks up an extremely unlikely ball on the right, and swerves towards the box before cleverly setting up Rutter. The Leeds new boy sends in a long diagonal pass for Sinisterra to nudge into goal, but it's overcooked and slides out.
More from Mike Whalley
That goal came at an important time for Leeds, a club who have suffered more than their share of FA Cup humiliations down the years. Accrington have done plenty of probing in the game's opening quarter, and this was shaping up to be an awkward afternoon. It might still be. Meanwhile, the home fans are maintaining their sense of humour with a chant of: "You only sing when you're winning."
No relation to the Shaun Whalley on the pitch. I think?
28 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Whalley takes advantage of a sub-optimal corner, slicing through the middle of the pack, before cutting leftwards to Pressley. Pressley picks up the run, before firing at Meslier and forcing a breakneck save.
Accrington Stanley's corner is more promising, but Rodgers can't quite get to the curving shot.
26 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
Bamford goes on the run from just over the halfway line to pick up a cute pass and head off, but he's marginally offside, and the flag shuts him down.
Rutter is next to break loose, getting his pass away to Roca just before he's felled. Roca takes the shot, but Coyle pulls off a terrific block to force a corner.
GOAL!! Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 1
The Premier League quality shines through as Leeds conjure up an attack from nothing. Harrison picks up a neatly cut back pass from Bamford just north of the D, and fires an unbeatable strike past Savin!
22 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
Sinisterra and Longelo are drawn into battle again, this time with Sinisterra tumbling Longelo for a long-range free kick on the right. This time, the ball is played to find the head of a running Whalley, but he strays just offside, and the flag goes up.
20 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
Sinsisterra pulls up a well-timed high ball, dancing in from the left before fouling a running player in red on the edge of the box. Whalley picks up a flicked ball and steamrollers down the right, reaching the corner flag under pressure, but denied a corner after a hasty Leeds intervention.
Firpo attempts to float the ball into the box from 35 yards out towards the head of Rutter, but quick-thinking defending from Accrington Stanley bullies the ball out for a goal kick.
18 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
Harrison slaloms back and fourth, looking for a route through in front of the box, but the Accrington Stanley lock up and keep them out. Pushed back once again, Sinisterra sprints forward to escape, but Coyle canters in with a heavy challenge that sets up a Leeds freekick just inside their own half.
16 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
Longelo sparks down the right, and sends in a well-timed cross, and the ensuing attempt gets close at the near post. That's the home team's sixth attempt, to a sum total of nil from the visitors.
Longelo is already impressing, getting back in good time to see off a nascent Leeds attack. But Leeds are looking a little toothless at present.
14 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
The home side still look the more comfortable of the two sides, well-drilled, whilst Leeds haven't quite got things in gear. Rutter stymies the possibility of a quick counter on the halfway life after a Leeds pass once again finds a player in head-to-toe red.
Greenwood puts in a small-scale challenge halfway into the Leeds half, setting up an Accrington Stanley freekick. It's worked neatly wide, before McConville has yet another weighty shot at goal which stings Meslier's palms.
11 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
The BBC commentary team are nearly taken out in the gantry by a high ball flying out of play, but ball returned, play can resume.
Rutter slaloms into McConville, who makes the best of it in a game without Var, and picks up a freekick. Moments later, he rifles the ball over the crossbar from 30 yards out.
9 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
Whalley bullets the ball into the box from the left, but Firpo leaps to get a head to it. Leeds try to set up a contained run of passing, but once again, a short ball is misplayed, and Accrington Stanley can tussle for possession.
7 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
Leeds deal with the corner efficiently, but Accrington Stanley come again, sending a fizzy, optimistic ball into an unoccupied penalty area, gifting Meslier a goal kick.
Firpo ushers the ball up the pitch, but when Wober collects, Pressley sticks his boot in for a challenge. Off the back of the freekick, Rutter drifts into the box from its top, and has his first attempt, but even as Savin dives the right way, the ball skirts wide of the post.
5 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
The ball is booted in from the left to the Leeds box, but Sinisterra finds it, and hoofs it out. Accrington Stanley are looking likely early on, heavily favouring long balls – as anticipated by Marsch.
One of these is sent into the box, and Meslier dithers over how to dispatch it. Pressley brings the ball down and tries to have a shot, but he's unbalanced, and wacky Leeds defending sends the ball out for a corner.
3 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
Tharme boots the ball away from probing Leeds boots, but Koch is able to knock the ball back into the Accrington Stanley half. Leeds win a corner, which flies high and long, and Savin can leap out to gather up the ball quickly.
Accrington Stanley feed the ball up towards Pressley, before scuttling the ball rightwards to Longelo. Longelo has a chance to cross into the box, but he overcooks things, and possession falls back to Leeds.
1 min: Accrington Stanley 0 Leeds 0
The home side have the first touch, and they make their first dig into the Leeds half, Longelo sprinting down the right, but he's overturned quickly. When Whalley looks to edge the ball a little further, he's muscled out of play for a Leeds throw-in.
The players are out
And flags are waving in a packed Wham Stadium. We'll be underway in a matter of moments.
Mike Whalley is at the Wham Stadium
The atmosphere is building nicely here now. Half-a-dozen huge flags are being waved in the home end; one has a picture of manager John Coleman and bears the message: Football Genius. The Leeds fans, packed into the uncovered away end, are in good voice, with a loud rendition of Marching On Together.
Next up, Jesse Marsch
Reflecting on his 11 months in charge:
I feel like it's now coming together. we feel strong on the inside that the process we wanted to kick in faster is now coming together.
On Georginio Rutter's inclusion in the starting XI:
Just want him to play with the quality that I know he has, and the confidence.
We'll use him like a second striker at times.
I think he'll show really well today.
John Coleman talks to Match of the Day
Our fans make a noise every game and I can't want to win anymore than I want to win every game.
It's no different today.
On his 22-year spell as manager:
I've had a lot of trust from the owners, the owners have been brilliant
Over the years, lots of people have worked hard. We have a new owner [who has been brilliant].
Everything's going in the right direction [but we have to stay in League One].
Today is a good thing for the fans, a good day out, but our priority is the league.
Can Accrington Stanley rise to the occasion?
Their season's form might suggest a giant-killing is a long way off; they are currently languishing just above the relegation zone in League One. But a run of wins against fancied opposition such as 11th-placed Bristol Rovers and progression to the quarter-finals of the EFL Trophy could have spirits high. There's always the magic of the FA Cup, too...
Why Leeds spent £36m on Georginio Rutter
“It’s going to be a big opportunity for him to step in quickly,” said Marsch. “You can see he is a young, energetic person with a smile on his face that is naturally brave and excited about the potential to be a big level footballer. He knows a lot of the players I have coached in the past, like Christopher Nkunku, Dayot Upamecano, Ibrahima Konaté, high potential players.
“When we did research on him, right foot versus left foot, you look at most players they are very right or left foot dominant. Someone who is both footed winds up being 20 to 25 per cent on their weak foot in terms of how much they touch and move with the ball on that foot. Georginio is 50-50. He is maybe the most two-footed player that I’ve ever seen.”
Jesse Marsch is impressed, but can Rutter provide an instant impact on his debut?
Read more about Leeds' record signing here.
Atmosphere rising at a soggy Wham Stadium
That news, in full
Accrington Stanley: Toby Savin (GK), Ethan Hamilton, Ryan Astley, Liam Coyle, Shaun Whalley, Tommy Leigh, Sean McConville (c), Rosaire Longelo, Harvey Rodgers, Aaron Pressley, Douglas Tharme
Substitutes: Jensen, Nolan, Perritt, Martin, Quirk, Woods, Adekoya, Pickles, Fernandes
Leeds: Ilan Meslier (GK), Junior Firpo, Rasmus Kristensen, Maximilian Wober, Robin Koch, Marc Roca, Sam Greenwood, Jack Harrison, Luis Sinisterra, Georginio Rutter, Patrick Bamford (c)
Substitutes: Robles, Van den Heubel, Ayling, Llorente, Gyabi, Aaronson, Perkins, Joseph
Accrington Stanley make only two changes from their third-round replay against Boreham Wood, both enforced as Longelo and Pressely replace Michael Nottingham and Ethan Hamilton.
Marsch has greater freedom to rest players, which means Bamford can start ahead of Rodrigo, and Gnonto is left behind entirely. Hopefully there's no cause for concern there, as the young player has recently proved such a bright spark for his side. As anticipated, Rutter starts, which should prove thrilling – his manager has hyped him up as "the most two-footed player I've ever seen".
📋 𝗬𝗼𝘂𝗿 #LUFC 𝗦𝘁𝗮𝗿𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗫𝗜...
🙌 A first start for Georginio
©️ Patrick Bamford named captain pic.twitter.com/Y01pR7czme
— Leeds United (@LUFC) January 28, 2023
👥 𝙏𝙚𝙖𝙢 𝙉𝙚𝙬𝙨…
Here’s your #asfc starting XI for this afternoon’s @EmiratesFACup fourth round tie against @LUFC. pic.twitter.com/Nzy3QbQaGc
— Accrington Stanley (@ASFCofficial) January 28, 2023
Can Accrington Stanley pull off a giant-slaying for the ages?
Hello and welcome to Telegraph Sport's live coverage of the fourth-round FA Cup match between Leeds and Accrington Stanley, kicking off at the thrillingly-named Wham Stadium at 12.30pm.
Accrington Stanley will look to complete an unprecedented giant-killing at home and break new ground in the competition, having never progressed past this round since their re-founding in 1968. But there's more than enough to celebrate before kick-off, as the tie against the travelling Premier League side has already garnered around £300,000 for the club in TV revenue, ticket sales and fourth-round prize money.
"When you are talking about turnovers of circa £3m, give or take a little bit more nowadays, it's 10% of your turnover," said managing director David Burgess in an interview with BBC Radio Lancashire, who called the fixture 'season changing'.
"It's really important to us. It is the difference between red and black. It's football fortune and you're not planning for it, but when it comes along you are desperate for it."
Leeds will be playing with no less desperation, as Jesse Marsch wrestles to get his season back on track after last weekend's ground-out draw against Brentford failed to provide his club with a necessary cushion above the relegation zone.
The Yorkshire club will look to harness the dwindling confidence felt after their comprehensive 5-2 victory over Cardiff in their third-round replay, and banish recent demons in the competition: a loss on the road would mark the sixth consecutive year the club has failed to reach the fifth round of tournament.
Facing the League One side will also give Marsch the opportunity to gift his club's record signing, Georginio Rutter, a full debut, after being named to the bench against Brentford.
"I think he's impressed in training," Marsch said on the eve of the match.
"He's an intelligent guy, and like I said before, by being in Germany he understands a lot of the the principles that we use.
"So yeah, I'm excited to get him going for sure."
Stick with us for all of the team news, build-up, and interviews ahead of kick-off in just under an hour.