Leeds United’s progress clear as global ranking puts Whites ahead of big-name European sides

Leeds United have been ranked 36th in FiveThirtyEight’s renowned Global Club Soccer Rankings table ahead of the 2021/22 campaign.

This follows the club’s ninth-placed finish in the Premier League and highlights the speed of development that is currently taking place at Elland Road.

Of the English sides involved in the rankings, the Whites rank tenth, between West Ham and Everton and ahead of European sides such as Europa League semi-finalists Roma, their neighbours Lazio, Scottish champions Rangers, Valencia and a host of other big-name sides.

The rankings are calculated through a metric known as the Soccer Power Index (SPI) and this judges how each team would perform against an average team on a neutral field.

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Each team is given an offensive rating, which represents how many goals the team are expected to score in those circumstances as well as a defensive rating which assesses how many goals they would be likely to concede.

In Leeds’ case, the offensive rating is 2.1 while the defensive rating is 0.8 which leads to an overall SPI score of 74.9.

This score indicates the percentage of points that they would be expected to gain when faced against the other teams on the list on a neutral field.

While that might all be a bit confusing, it effectively means that FiveThirtyEight rank Leeds as currently the 36 th best football team in the world, discounting any debates around the hypothetical size of the club or its previous honours.

Not only does that show just how impressive Marcelo Bielsa’s side were in the Premier League last season but it also shows just how rapidly the club is improving.

Returning to the biggest stage and banishing the trips to League 1 and the lower half of the Championship is the shared ambition between both the club and its supporters. Another season of top-flight stability would certainly show that it is becoming a reality.

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