Michael Owen has predicted that Leeds United will lose on their long-awaited return to the Premier League this weekend. 

The Whites come up against reigning champions Liverpool on Saturday evening after a 16-year absence from the top flight.

But while the ex-England international foresees an “entertaining” match, he still believes that Jurgen Klopp’s men will have too much for Marcelo Bielsa’s newly-promoted side.

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Speaking to Bet Victor, he said: “Champions of the Premier League Liverpool host one of the newly promoted teams and champions of the Championship in Leeds United.

“It’s always a tricky way to start a new campaign but on this occasion I don’t think the fixture should hold too many fears for Liverpool.

“I am really looking forward to watching Leeds this season as I love the way they go about their business and I think one thing we can guarantee with Marcelo Bielsa’s team is entertainment.

“I am actually going for an entertaining game in this clash of old rivals but fancy Liverpool to come out on top with a 3-1 victory at Anfield.”

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As much as we’d love Owen to be wrong, none of us are under any illusions over just how difficult to will be to take anything away from Anfield this weekend.

Liverpool were imperious last season, and as far as baptisms of fire go, they don’t come much hotter than this.

We saw a similarly pessimistic verdict from Kevin Phillips when the Premier League fixture list was announced, although his prediction did come with that caveat that it is better to get these big games out of the way early on for newly-promoted sides.

Of course, Bielsa won’t take a defeat lying down, and you can bet that he has a trick or two up his sleeve to try and cause an upset, but all things considered, Leeds could hardly be facing a more difficult start to life in the top flight.

In other Leeds United news, ‘Leeds said privately’ – Phil Hay delivers transfer update, comments on Draxler amid Romano post.

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