Striker axed in Monk 4-2-3-1: Best possible Leeds XI to face Huddersfield
COMMENT By Will Butcher
Leeds should axe Marcus Antonsson and play an extra midfielder as Garry Monk prepares a game plan to overcome league leaders Huddersfield this weekend.
Leeds welcome their Yorkshire rivals to Elland Road on Saturday, as pressure continues to surround the former Swansea boss with just four points from five Championship games.
The inclusion of a third midfielder would mean a striker will drop out. Top-scorer Chris Wood should be given the nod over Antonsson, as the Swede is still getting to grips with the physical rigours of the Championship.
Monk has recently opted for a 4-4-2 system that sees them work well on the counter attack, but at home possession is important and an extra midfielder would make them less vulnerable to surges from high-flying Huddersfield.
New captain Liam Bridcutt is likely to marshall the back four, with new signing Eunan O’Kane being given a box-to-box role alongside the Scotland international.
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The duo’s Premier League experience will be vital in the middle of the park throughout the season, and Bridcutt will no doubt be buoyed after being handed the captain’s armband.
With Spain international Pablo Hernandez playing in front of them, Leeds look much more solid with both experience and knowhow in the middle of the park.
Elsewhere, Leeds could look to shake up their defence after keeping just one domestic clean sheet all season. The unfortunate casualty could be Kyle Bartley, with Sweden international Pontus Jansson being given a chance at the heart of the defence.
The pace of Hadi Sacko and Stuart Dallas will give Leeds an attacking outlet on the wings, while full-backs Charlie Taylor and Luke Ayling will look to get forward as much as possible.
A win for Leeds would see them rise to mid-table mediocrity, whereas Huddersfield will be looking to extend their stay as early Championship pace setters.