Lee Bowyer says the Premier League ‘NEEDS’ Leeds United back in the top flight, with the Yorkshire club on the cusp of ending their long 16-year-old exile.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side top the Championship table and are seven points clear of Fulham in third place, ahead of plans to resume the 2019/20 campaign in June.
But if the season cannot get back underway, it appears the Whites and promotion rivals West Brom will benefit from the English Football League’s recent decision to decide the final table on a points-per-game basis, which would see Leeds crowned as champions.
While the EFL’s decision has worked out for Leeds, though, it has left chiefs and managers of other clubs absolutely fuming.
Among them is former Leeds midfielder and current Charlton boss, Bowyer, who joined talkSPORT earlier this week to blast the league and their announcement.
Ending the campaign on a points-per-game basis means the Addicks would be relegated from the Championship if the second tier cannot be completed.
That is despite the London club only just slipping into the bottom-three for the first time this season SIX DAYS before the campaign was halted.
He told the talkSPORT Breakfast: “There are 27 points still to play for, we’ve only been in the bottom three for six days – give us the chance to get out!
“It would be wrong, this points-per-game, because we’ve played 37 games this season and for 36 of them we haven’t been in the bottom three.
“This time last season Aston Villa weren’t even in the play-offs positions, and now they’re in the Premier League.”
Villa won last season’s play-off final to seal their return to the Premier League, after a late burst of form to make it in the top-six.
Bielsa’s men lost at the semi-final stage last term but came back from that disappointment to make another charge for promotion, which looks likely to succeed.
And Bowyer says it’s an outcome the club deserve after so long outside of the top flight, where he insists they belong.
“I’m delighted for Leeds and to be fair they deserve to go up, they are the best side in our division,” he told talkSPORT.
“I think Leeds deserve to be in the Premier League, and I think the Premier League needs Leeds, needs their support.
“It’s a great atmosphere and a great ground to play there, so yeah they should be in the Premier League.
“I have no doubt, if we do finish the season I believe they will be in the top two, they’re the best side in the league.”
Listen to a clip of Lee Bowyer on the talkSPORT Breakfast above!