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Phillips to miss out? How we think Leeds could line up against Middlesbrough

Leeds United Prediction: Probable XI to face Middlesbrough

Leeds United make the trip to Middlesbrough on Wednesday evening, having strengthened their grip on second place in the Championship table. The Whites recorded back-to-back victories against Bristol City and Reading, meaning that they’re comfortably on track to secure a top-two finish. They are in an excellent position to end their 16-year exile from the Premier League after getting back to winning ways. Middlesbrough, meanwhile, are embroiled in a relegation battle after a succession of poor results in 2020.

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Kalvin Phillips was forced off with a dead leg in the 1-0 win over Reading and the midfielder will certainly miss Wednesday’s clash at the Riverside Stadium. Other than Phillips, Marcelo Bielsa has no fresh injury concerns ahead of the game.

Leeds United Prediction: Probable XI

Formation: 4-1-4-1

Kiko Casilla (GK)

Two back-to-back clean sheets should have given Casilla a lot of confidence ahead of Wednesday’s game. The Spaniard will continue in goal.

Luke Ayling (RB)

Ayling has nailed down his position at right-back and should start against Middlesbrough.

Ben White of Leeds United reacts to the fans following the Sky Bet Championship match between West Bromwich Albion and Leeds United at The Hawthorns on January 01, 2020 in West Bromwich, England. (Getty Images)
Ben White of Leeds United reacts to the fans following the Sky Bet Championship match between West Bromwich Albion and Leeds United at The Hawthorns on January 01, 2020 in West Bromwich, England. (Getty Images)

Ben White (CB)

One of the first names on the team sheet, White has been a model of consistency for Leeds United this season. There’s no reason for him to miss out on the trip to Middlesbrough.

Liam Cooper (CB)

Partnering White in central defence should be Cooper and the duo will aim to keep a clean sheet at the Riverside Stadium.

Ezgjan Alioski (LB)

Dallas’ position could change on Wednesday following Phillips’ injury, resulting in Alioski coming back into Bielsa’s side at left-back.

Stuart Dallas (CDM)

Dallas is likely to replace the injured Phillips in the holding role against Boro. The Northern Irishman will have a big void to fill as Leeds aim to secure three consecutive victories.

Leeds United's Stuart Dallas in action. (Getty Images)
Leeds United’s Stuart Dallas in action. (Getty Images)

Helder Costa (RW)

Quick and unpredictable, Costa could cause problems to the shaky Boro defence. He will keep his place on the right flank.

Pablo Hernandez (LCM)

Hernandez capped off a fine performance against Reading by scoring the winner. The Spaniard showed signs of getting back to his old self and must look to build on that performance.

Mateusz Klich (RCM)

Klich will be the player who would link the midfield and the attack at Middlesbrough. The Pole is a certainty to find himself in the Leeds XI.

Jack Harrison in action for Leeds. (Getty Images)
Jack Harrison in action for Leeds. (Getty Images)

Jack Harrison (LW)

Harrison has been a revelation for Bielsa’s side this season, scoring five goals and supplying six assists in the league for the promotion-chasers. The Englishman will retain his place on the left flank.

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Patrick Bamford (ST)

Failure to score against Reading means Bamford’s run without a goal has now been extended to five games. Yet, he has Bielsa’s confidence and should lead the attack against his former club at the Riverside Stadium.

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