By Will Butcher
Frozen out by manager Garry Monk at the start of the season, Souleymane Doukara has broken his way back into Leeds’ starting XI.
The Senegalese striker has performed admirably on the left side of Leeds attack, leaving the Elland Road turf during Sunday’s 2-0 defeat to Newcastle with his head held high.
But with his contract set to expire in the summer of 2017, Doukara is free to talk to sign for a non-English club in the January window.
With his hard work and effort not gone unnoticed by former Swansea boss Monk, here are three reasons why Doukara should be given a contract extension:
The 25-year-old is considered a centre-forward by trade, but is equally adept on the left side of midfield as he shone against the Toon by winning the ball back and keeping it well under pressure.
His ability to replace players in a number of positions to a standard deemed good enough is a rare commodity in Leeds’ squad, as he continues to fill in for Stuart Dallas.
When all players are fit, Doukara can give Monk an option from the bench as he did against Burton Albion with a goal and an assist in the dying moments during their 2-0 win.
Ability to score or assist important goals
Doukara always seems to pop up just at the right time for the Yorkshire giants.
His cameo role against Championship newcomers Burton saw him earn a penalty, before bundling the ball into the back of the net himself. That came after an important assist in Leeds’ EFL Cup win against Norwich for Marcus Antonsson’s strike.
Last term, the former Catania forward scored five goals towards the tail end of the season as Leeds secured their Championship status for another season.
Brings the best out of Wood
Doukara provides the competition that Chris Wood thrives off.
Wood has begun to flourish since Doukara started to apply pressure on the New Zealand international, scoring four goals in his last six games for Monk’s side.
Keeping Doukara in the Leeds team will continue to keep Wood on his toes, as Leeds eye a Championship playoff spot.
In other Leeds news, this report has revealed Leeds plans for the January transfer window.