Leeds United: Five talking points ahead of Brentford

Leeds United face Brentford on Tuesday night after their 1-0 win against Bristol City on Saturday.

Monday, 25th January 2016, 10:44 am
Updated Monday, 25th January 2016, 10:54 am
Leeds United have had a bid accepted for Brentford's Toumani Diagouraga, left (Picture: Stephen Pond/PA Wire)

Here are five talking points ahead of that game:

1) Will Toumani Diagouraga make his debut?

The Brentford midfielder looks set to confirm his move to Elland Road on Monday after a two-part medical over the weekend. Signed for a reported £600,000, Diagouraga can make his debut for his new side against his old one on Tuesday night.

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If he is involved, it will be interesting to see what the reaction at Griffin Park will be to a player who has acheived cult status among fans of the Bees. It will also be interesting to see how he fits into Steve Evans’ system.

2) Chris Wood returning to the team

After a long lay-off with injury Chris Wood finally returned to the matchday squad against Bristol City on Saturday. Leeds had missed him, dropping from the fringes of the top-half to a lower mid-table position.

He had an immediate impact after being brought on from the bench, setting up Souleymane Doukara for the only goal of the game. Wood is a key player for the Whites, the only player in the squad who can play the target man role with any guarantee of quality. He could start on Tuesday, which would only be welcome.

3) A true test of where Leeds are as a side

Leeds managed a 1-0 win against Bristol City on Saturday but it provided little indication of where the Whites truly stand as a team. Bristol are 22nd in the Championship, have just sacked their manager and came to Elland Road looking for a draw.

Brentford, on the other hand, are 10th in the Championship and could still be involved in the play-off mix in the second-half of the season.

They will be a good side for Evans to test his team against and find out quite how far away from the top half of the table Leeds are.

4) Will Massimo Cellino replicate last season’s antics?

It was the stuff of footballing folklore. Massimo Cellino was ejected from the Brentford directors’ box for being too enthusiastic and decided to go in the Leeds away end, stopping for a hot dog along the way.

Cellino seems to have given up on his self-imposed ban from watching Leeds, but should the same thing happen it would be surprising if he was as welcomed among the away support this year.

5) Can Doukara force himself into the conversation for next season?

Only a couple of months ago Souleymane Doukara was a million miles away from the first team. With three goals in his last four games, he has shown he has something at Championship level.

There is still a sense that Doukara needs to be improved upon, and Evans has been chasing a striker for his entire tenure.

Leeds are clearly building for 2016/17 this month. It is now down to the French forward to show the former Rotherham chief that he deserves a place next season. Scoring goals is one way to do that.