Every word from Leeds United boss Javi Gracia's pre-Leicester City press conference on injuries, Angus Kinnear, Victor Orta and plea to fans

Leeds United face an absolutely massive relegation battle six pointer at home to Leicester City tomorrow, ahead of which Whites boss Javi Gracia held his pre-match press conference today.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Hot on the heels of hidings to Crystal Palace and Liverpool, fifth-bottom Leeds fell to a third Premier League defeat on the spin at the weekend as Saturday’s clash at Fulham ended in a 2-1 defeat. With just six games left, Gracia’s side are now only one point clear of the drop zone following a 2-1 victory for relegation rivals Leicester at home to Wolves and a goalless draw for Everton at Crystal Palace.

Victory for Leicester took the Foxes out of the drop zone and just a point and a place behind Leeds who they now visit for an enormous Tuesday night encounter under the Elland Road lights. Gracia spoke to the media at 1pm at Thorp Arch and here is everything that was said by United’s Spanish head coach.

Leeds United v Leicester City - Javi Gracia press conference every word

Something has to change - does your approach have to change, particularly going into the start of the game tomorrow?

“I try to look for the players in best condition to compete because we have to recognise that we need to compete better if we want to achieve better results. We need to change something but not the solution is not always to change players. We have to find a way to have a better balance like we did in many other games. and with a good balance we’ll be able to, we will be closer to getting better results is my my opinion about that. Not always the solution is to change players.”

On Meslier being young - do you have to treat him differently?

“I treat differently all my players because they are different and I speak in different moments on different days with all of them about different things. It’s my job and I have a good relationship with my players and when they need me, I will always be there.”

Do you have to protect certain players, particularly young players if they are in such poor form at such an important important moment?

“What I feel is my players are working very well day, day in day out, everyday. As I said before, when I arrived nine games ago I could feel they really wanted to change the dynamic. They wanted to do everything to get the results. And now it doesn’t change. Of course, we’re coming from three bad results but the atmosphere, the spirit of the team is the same. I think we have very good players and like the rest of the teams and the rest of the players they have ups and downs and we have to manage that even more with young players. As I said before, they need that I support them and I will be here to support them because they need now the support, not only when we won some games, important games for the club, but now they need now support, when they are not in the best moment to break this vicious circle. We need to break it and to do that they need the support. After that I am sure they will be back with their level, their best level.”

Midfield came in for some criticism, is Forshaw fit enough to come in?

“He played the last game and he’s available. After, we have to know he is a player who is coming from a long term injury and he needto be in his best condition for sure he needs time but in this moment we don’t have time. We have to take the best of all our players in the condition they are.”

On the 21s/younger players - is it harder to develop them now in a season like this because games mean so much and pressure so high?

“I agree that there are better moments for these young players because in this moment they have to accept a big responsibility and I think it’s not fair for them. I think they have to grow but in a better moment, in a better situation, in my opinion. But if we need them they play. I believe in all of them, but I think it is better for the young players to grow in other atmospheres.”

Does the earlier run you had when you first came in convince you that the players have the belief, desire and ability to stay in the PL?

“I feel that they have all you are saying. they believe, they have the desire, but sometimes, the other day I told them, that when you feel something for someone you have to do something, you have to let them know that you feel something for that person but you have to do it. Now, of course nobody doubts about your desire, your commitment, about all these things. But this is the moment, this is the moment to do it, it is the moment after the last three defeats we have to do something different. Let the people know the desire you have in the moment in the game and you have to do it because in every training session I can feel it. Then we have to demonstrate that on the field in the next game.”

On training - good atmosphere? Transmitting that to the matches?

“That’s the key, try to be able to take our work here to the competition. Of course it is hard because we are competing against good teams, against teams that have the objectives and it’s not easy but we have to change something to compete better.”

On fan anger at Fulham, how badly do you need the fans to stick by your side?

“I told you after the game I can understand that the supporters are angry but at the same time I know they will support the team. I don’t have any doubt about that.”

If things don’t start well tomorrow and the crowd grow unhappy, are you concerned how player will react?

“If I can say something to the fans it is support the players because they need them.”

Is this game bigger than the cup final you had with Watford?

“All the games are important and for me the next game is the most important, it is the moment I am living and I put my life there. I put everything in this game in this challenge. In these next games, six games is my life and we are all concentrating on that. What I lived in my past was important in that moment and good memories for me but now the present is important.”