KEMAR ROOFE insisted Leeds United’s inclusion in the play-offs was a long way from being secured but said he did not want the club to consider themselves out of the running for automatic promotion either after a 1-1 draw at Fulham carried them into their final 10 games.
The forward is looking for the squad at Leeds to push for second place in the Championship “until it’s mathematically clear that we can’t” despite a last-gasp concession at Fulham lengthening the gap between United and the top two.
Leeds were stung by a dramatic equaliser from Fulham’s Tom Cairney deep into stoppage-time at Craven Cottage on Tuesday, dropping Garry Monk’s side nine points behind Brighton in second.
Brighton are due to visit Elland Road next weekend, United’s next league fixture after Saturday’s clash with Queens Park Rangers, and Roofe said he still had one eye on a top-two finish with Leeds fourth in the table after 36 matches.
But he warned that the club still had work to do to guarantee a play-off position following their result in West London.
Fulham, who sit one place below the play-off zone, are eight points behind Leeds with a game in hand and Roofe said: “We’ve still got a long way to go. Anything can happen and there’s a lot of teams fighting for the positions. All we can do is do our job.
“We’re still fighting for second and until it’s mathematically clear that we can’t, we’re going to keep going and try to claw our way back up. And the thing is, the pressure’s not on us. It’s on everybody else. We’re just trying to play with freedom and enjoy our football.”
Roofe said Cairney’s late equaliser - a classy, long-range finish with firve minutes of injury-time played - would not serve to deflate Monk’s players.
United were on the verge of opening up an 11-point lead over Fulham but Roofe said: “It’s another step closer to our end goal which is hopefully promotion. We’ll get back in and we will go again.”
We’re still fighting for second and until it’s mathematically clear that we can’t, we’re going to keep going and try to claw our way back upLeeds United’s Kemar Roofe