By Will Butcher

Garry Monk has defended his attacking talisman Chris Wood after the striker was forced to endure heavy criticism at the start of the campaign.

The 24-year-old has silenced critics in recent weeks, scoring three goals in as many games as his return to form coincides with Leeds recent winning streak.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference ahead of Leeds’ home game against Ipswich on Saturday, Monk was quoted by Leeds’ official Twitter account as saying that he was delighted with the New Zealand captain’s all-round contribution.

“You want strikers to be scoring,” Monk said, as quoted by Leeds official Twitter account. “But his contribution all round has also been to a very high level.”

Monk was also quoted by Yorkshire Evening Post journalist Lee Sobot on his personal Twitter account as saying that he was pleased for the target man, after criticism.

“He came in for criticism earlier on this season which I didn’t understand,” Monk said, as quoted by Lee Sobot on his personal Twitter account. “I am pleased for him.”

Leeds produced their third win on the bounce on Tuesday night with a 1-0 win against Blackburn in the EFL Cup third round, and they will look to make it four against Ipswich on Saturday.

A win for the Yorkshire giants will take them into the top half of the Championship table for the first time this season, if results go their way. A loss though, could see all of their hard work come undone and they would continue to languish above the relegation zone.

In other Leeds news, Chris Wood has identified the five players that have been at the heart of Leeds’ revival.