Leeds given huge boost by pending injury return

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Leeds United have struggled in recent weeks.

The club enjoyed a pulsating start to the season, pushing Liverpool to their limits and taking a point off Manchester City, but their form has tailed off in recent weeks.

Marcelo Bielsa’s men beat Aston Villa 3-0 at the end of October but have since lost 4-1 twice, to Leicester City and Crystal Palace.

The results mean they are firmly in mid-table, sitting 15th, and one has to say that they have missed the calming influence of Kalvin Phillips in midfield.

The England international has been ruled out of the club’s last three games with a shoulder injury and it should come as no surprise that they have subsequently shipped eight goals.

Phillips could be back this weekend when Bielsa’s side take on Arsenal in the Premier League.

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The defensive midfielder’s return boosts Leeds’ chances of an upset and former Gunners striker Kevin Campbell has waxed lyrical about his talents.

Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “I’m a big fan of his.

“I think he is a really good player – tenacious, good passer and he knows their system inside out.

“He protects the back line very well. He sits in that midfield and dictates the play.

“Leeds have really missed him and having him back will be a massive boost for them, definitely.”

GIVEMESPORT’S Harry Sherlock says…

Leeds really haven’t been the same without Phillips.

He offers a degree of defensive protection that is entirely absent when he is out of the game, and his hassling, harrying and accurate passing are all vital to the way manager Marcelo Bielsa plays.

Against an Arsenal side that is struggling for form, having Phillips back could be just the boost they need, and ultimately help them spring a surprise on Mikel Arteta’s men.

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Campbell is right to be waxing lyrical and he’d also be justified if he were a little bit worried.

Leeds’ chances of winning the game have increased dramatically with the news that Phillips, who is valued at £19.8m by Transfermarkt, will be back.

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