Noel Whelan expects the Leeds United Premier League campaign to begin in a very different way than last season when they were crowned Championship champions.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Leeds forward and boyhood fan delivered his verdict as the club’s first Premier League fixtures for 16 years were revealed.

Marcelo Bielsa’s men begin the campaign with a visit to Anfield where they’ll face Liverpool on September 12th.

The game will see the Championship champions test themselves against Premier League champions.

And Whelan is expecting a tough game for his former side.

Asked by Football Insider about the club’s opening fixture, Whelan said: “Personally I would’ve liked a club that was mid-table just to bed ourselves in.

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“This is a big ‘welcome to the premier league’.

“There’s no better start to it then being thrown in the deep end and playing the Champions.

“This will be a very very big test because as much as we dominated possession last season, I think the roles will be reversed when you’re playing against Liverpool.

“This a huge task, it’s exciting and you never know but we’ve got to get a few bodies in the door before we play Liverpool.

“It’s disappointing there’ll be no fans there but that’s the nature of the times we’re living in now.

“We want home fans back in the stadium and that would definitely help us at Elland Road because that’s where we need to win the majority of our games.”

The whites’ first home game is against fellow promoted side Fulham the following week.

In other news, Football Insider can REVEAL Leeds United are lining up a sensational move to re-sign a 23-year-old.