By Alex Stevens

Stuart Dallas has branded speculation about the future of Leeds manager Garry Monk as “nonsense”.

Speculation has been rife in recent days that controversial owner Massimo Cellino is ready to swing the managerial axe for the seventh time in three years even though the Yorkshire giants beat Blackburn 2-1 on Tuesday night.

However, Monk presented a calm face to the media on Thursday afternoon ahead of Saturday’s Championship clash against Cardiff and claimed he had the support of his chairman.

Monk said, as quoted by the official Leeds Twitter account, he was in regular contract with Cellino, who “has been very supportive” and “he’s enjoying the work that we’re doing”.

Dallas gave his full backing to the manager and said he put little store in reports that Monk was close to the sack.

“I don’t read the newspapers to start off with, but obviously the fans have got a lot of expectation here,” Dallas said, as quoted by the Yorkshire Evening Post.

“There’s maybe people who have brought speculation about the manager, but it’s nonsense really.

“He’s a good manager, we have bought into what he is doing, everybody is enjoying it and I can only see us getting better.”

Monk has made a poor start to life in Yorkshire, with just two Championship wins in seven games. The Yorkshire giants are languishing above the relegation zone in 17th place, despite the win over rock-bottom Blackburn.

Dallas, finding his feet again following his summer exertions with Northern Ireland at the Euro 2016 finals, dismissed early fears that Leeds could struggle this season.

“What are we? Six or seven games in?” he said to the Yorkshire Evening Post. “To start talking about relegation is silly.

“Obviously we’ve been disappointed that we haven’t been able to get results, but to talk about the relegation zone is silly.

“We can only take one game at a time and that is Cardiff on Saturday, but we have given ourselves a platform now.

“It’s something that we haven’t had this past couple of seasons, we haven’t been on a three or four, five, six, seven winning streak and it’s something we need to do.”

Reports in England and Italy have claimed over the last week that Monk, 37, could be sacked by former Cagliari owner Cellino.

The Times paper edition on Wednesday claimed that Cellino has “grown tired” of Monk and is ready to make the young manager the seventh managerial casualty of his controversial three-year tenure.

Leeds travel to Cardiff on Saturday as the former Swansea manager looks to generate some momentum for the Yorkshire giants.

In other Leeds news, Monk has given an update on club captain Liam bridcutt after he picked up a knock.