AS top plays bottom today in the Championship, Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa insists too much should not be read into the table ahead of the clash with Stoke City.
The Argentinian’s side returned to the summit on Wednesday by beating Brentford - just 24 hours after being deposed by Sheffield Wednesday.
Stoke, meanwhile, are continuing to endure a miserable time under Nathan Jones with the much-fancied side having claimed a solitary draw this term.
It means nine points already separate Leeds from today’s hosts after just four games.
“The distance that there is between the teams in the table is almost never real so when you play it is always too close,” said Bielsa.
The distance that there is between the teams in the table is almost never real so when you play it is always too close,Marcelo Bielsa
“In the Championship, everyone knows that all the results are possible.
“In the first game Fulham can’t win (at Barnsley), to quote one example. For us it will be a much harder game - like all of the games we are imagining in the future.
“For them, it is obvious that they have very good players in the squad so this is one of the reasons that it will be hard.”
Bielsa may not put too much store in the league table right now but it is serving as an antidote to the painful end to last season.
Ensuring there was no hangover from the play-off defeat to Derby County was key, as loanee wideman Jack Harrison readily admits.
“I think it is always important to be doing well,” said the 22-year-old. “It is good not to be hungover on last season.
“It is a new year and we have to try and make the most out of it this year. There is no faulting the way that we play or Marcelo’s methodology.
“Everybody knows that it works and I think that is something that we have got to keep in our minds, just to trust in him.
“With his methodology and his style of play we can be successful.”
Stoke’s struggles for a second consecutive season - they finished a lowly 16th last term - have come as a surprise to many.
Harrison added: “I was born in Stoke. I grew up in Bolton but it is always a tough game going there to Stoke.
“They have not been doing the best recently but in this league anything can happen.
“The competition is so high so we definitely have to make sure that we are prepared and not be complacent.
“For them, things might be going bad right now but with the squad that they have they could probably quickly turn it around.”