35-year-old should watch out: Three things we expect from Leeds in clash with Reading
COMMENT By Danny Wright
Leeds travel to Reading on Saturday in a crucial Championship clash that could go a long way to settling the play-off places.
The hosts are just two points behind Leeds in the league table as both clubs look to keep up the pressure on Brighton and Newcastle in the automatic promotion spots.
Here, Football Insider analyses three things we expect from Garry Monk’s side during the top-of-the-table crunch match.
25-year-old will struggle
There are a few factors which would suggest that Chris Wood might not be able to find the net against Reading. The target man has scored five goals in his last four outings in the Championship but he picked up a knock while on international duty this week with New Zealand. He could be fit to start against the Royals but when you add the potential jet lag to the mix then you have a striker who is not only walking wounded but also tired. Reading boss Jaap Stam earned a reputation for a hard-hitting, no-nonsense type of defender in his playing days and he should possess the knowledge required to help his back line prevent Wood, 25, from scoring on Saturday.
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Three points in the bag
Leeds go into the clash with Reading knowing that they have history on their side. The West Yorkshire club have not lost in their last five meetings with the Royals dating back over three years. December saw Leeds get the upper hand at Elland Road in this season’s reverse fixture when goals from Wood and Souleymane Doukara settled a 2-0 win. Reading have only scored in one of the past five meetings between the two sides, who have only played each other 23 times in their entire histories. Although Wood might not be able to find the net on Saturday, goals could come from elsewhere.
Yann Kermorgant to get wiped out
The experienced striker has had some pretty strong words to say about Leeds this week and it’s likely that Monk could use his criticism of the Leeds tactics and perceived lack of fire-power as a team talk to help motivate his side. Some of the best managers in the business used to stick up newspaper articles on the dressing room wall and proclaim ‘this is what they’re saying about you, shut them up’. Monk should do this and it’s likely that the Leeds players will know what Kermorgrant has been saying. We can expect a few tough tackles to go in on the 35-year-old on Saturday. Not only will this make it an exciting, fiery encounter, but it will also give the travelling supporters something to smile about.
In other Leeds news, fans have taken to Twitter to give their thoughts on Kermorgant’s comments.