Danny Mills has insisted four Leeds United players are vital to the team winning the play-offs and securing a return to the Premier League.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-United defender named forward Kemar Roofe, central midfielder Kalvin Phillips and defensive duo Liam Cooper and Pontus Jansson as men who need to rise to the occasion for the club to avoid end-of-season heartache.
Leeds take on Derby County in the first leg of their play-off semi-final on Saturday at Pride Park, with the return clash at Elland Road on Wednesday week.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side finished third in the Championship after losing three of their last four games of the campaign when a top-two finish was in their hands.
“My fear for Leeds is whether they can perform when the pressure is on,” Mills told Football Insider. “The big players need to deliver against Derby, starting on Saturday.
“Kemar Roofe needs to have a good game. Scoring goals and converting chances has been a bit of a problem for Leeds.
“The two central defenders, Jansson and Liam Cooper, need to play well. Kalvin Phillips is key. If he gets dragged out of position, Leeds are very vulnerable.
“The full-backs and midfielders bomb on, and if Phillips is not there to protect the centre-backs, there is suddenly a huge gap to exploit, and they are outnumbered.”
Roofe returned to the Leeds starting XI in Sunday’s 3-2 defeat to bottom club Ipswich Town and missed the team’s third penalty in succession when he lost his footing and skied his shot over the bar.
The forward is the team’s leading scorer with 14 league goals this season but has not netted since the 11 January 2-0 win over Derby.
In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that Burnley have set their sights on a Whites ace as contract talks are set to begin.