Leeds United: Hectic schedule will prove a tricky test for Evans’ men – Ritchie

Leeds United players celebrate Alan Browne's own goal against Preston.
Leeds United players celebrate Alan Browne's own goal against Preston.
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Playing two games in three days like Leeds will this week is something that’s not happened in a long while.

Leeds travel to Nottingham Forest tomorrow teatime before welcoming Derby to Elland Road on Tuesday evening and usually you get a little bit more time to recover.

And I also read that they got back at about 3.30am after the Wolves game on Thursday night and obviously it’s difficult to recover.

It’s about getting everything right and do you train or not?

Obviously you have to prepare for the next game but you wouldn’t put that information into the players’ minds before the preceding game – if you know what I mean!

It is a logistical thing and a tactical thing that they have just got to get around.

It probably won’t happen too many times, I know it won’t, but it’s one of those things that Steve Evans has got to deal with.

As they play their next game today, Derby have an extra day to recover before Tuesday’s game against Leeds and it does seem a little bit unfair doesn’t it? Going back to when I was playing we played twice in three days all the time over Christmas.

We used to play on Boxing Day and then the day after the next and it was crazy. Crackers.

I thought those days had gone but it’s changed a little bit and it’s gone back to maybe what we were used to.

Certainly I don’t think it will happen too often, definitely not, and I can understand what Steve is saying about the Football League not wanting Leeds to go up and while he is moaning.

Two games in three days is not the norm these days and I don’t think it will happen too often. But a lot of people want to watch Leeds who are an invaluable asset to the Football League and the Football League just want to have them on the TV I think.

I can’t see it would be anything other than that, I don’t think there’s any other ulterior motives involved.

Sunday’s win against Preston put Leeds five points off the play-offs but in terms of the play-offs I’d definitely be keep my powder dry. We shouldn’t be getting above ourselves. You have just got to take it as it comes.

Leeds have had a really good run of late and Steve has got these difficult two games coming now, against Forest and Derby. Just see how you are after that.

I think probably at the beginning of the season maybe the target for the football club was probably top ten and maybe push for the play-offs.

That’s probably been re-jigged a little bit because of personal changes but I don’t think a top ten finish is out of the question for them.

Maybe the play-offs is just one step too far but who knows, you just get on that rollercoaster, keep going and see what happens.

Steve is wise enough to not heap pressure on the players and just go with the flow really. Derby County, who Leeds play on Tuesday, are one of the best teams in the Championship.

I’ve seen them on the telly, not live, and it’s the same with Nottingham Forest who, with the players they have got, I’m surprised they are where they are.

But then you would turn around and say that about Preston, Wolves, Blackburn, Leeds, QPR and Reading who are just in front of them – and Cardiff as well.

Cardiff are just one point off the play-offs but it’s so close there now and anything can happen.

Leeds have got on this little bit of a run and the players will be gaining in confidence.

But they’ve got to keep it going, the hard work has got to be there and it’s been nice to hear Steve talk about so positively about Marco Silvestri.

We said last week about how well he did at Wolves and he did so again against Preston.

And it’s also like we’ve just gained that little bit of luck as well now, what with Preston’s goalkeeper being sent off.

I’ve seen it and I’m not certain if it was a sending off or not. But Leeds United’s luck might just be turning a little bit. When you get that going for you, you never know what might happen.

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