By Jonty Banks

7th Jan, 2023 | 12:50pm

Sky Sports pundit drops ruthless Leeds United FA Cup claim as Cardiff City challenge awaits

David Prutton believes Leeds United should turn over Cardiff City in the third round of the FA Cup but has issued a warning that the club don’t fall foul to The Magic Of The Cup, in his Yorkshire Evening Post column.

The Whites are set to travel to the Cardiff City Stadium on Sunday (8 January) in what will be Jesse Marsch’s first experience of the FA Cup after managing in the Austrian, German and American leagues.

The 49-year-old’s side arrive on the back of consecutive draws in the Premier League against Newcastle United and West Ham and will hope to put their Championship opponents to the sword.

Writing in his weekly column for the Yorkshire Evening Post, Sky Sports pundit Prutton admitted he thought Leeds would successfully get their name in the hat for the fourth-round draw.

He said: “Given Cardiff’s form in the league, Leeds should go there and absolutely turn them over.

“But as ever, in a cup tie, on one given day, Cardiff might pull some performance out of the bag which blows Leeds out of the water so that’s what they have got to be very, very careful of.

“From a Leeds point of view, if they play with the energy that they can show at their very, very best and the quality that they can show at their very, very best in the Premier League then they should come away with a win.

Premier League the priority

Although a cup run could provide a timely boost of confidence for Marsch’s side, the Premier League should be considered their number one priority.

Despite picking up consecutive draws in the league, the Whites still remain firmly in a relegation dogfight – sitting just two points clear of the drop zone at the moment.

A favourable run of fixtures awaits this month, with a trip to Villa Park followed by matches against Brentford and Nottingham Forest. This three-game period could provide an opportunity to steer clear of the bottom three if they can claim five or six points, but it may mean Marsch needs to rest some of his senior players in the cup.

If the likes of Rodrigo or Tyler Adams were to pick up an injury against Cardiff, Leeds fans would never forgive the Whites’ manager. He simply cannot run the gauntlet at such a pivotal period of the season.

In other Leeds United news, Victor Orta could make moves to sign this MLS defender in either the summer or January, and it won’t break the bank.