Leeds United v Newport County: Talking points - Roofe and Wilks competing for striker role

UPFRONT? Leeds United's Kemar Roofe, pictured challenging Sunderland's Lamine Kone, may start in the lone striker role. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.
UPFRONT? Leeds United's Kemar Roofe, pictured challenging Sunderland's Lamine Kone, may start in the lone striker role. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.
0
Have your say

AHEAD of Tuesday night’s Carabao Cup clash with Newport County, Lee Sobot looks at a few key talking points in anticipation of the second round tie at Elland Road.

Will Rob Green start in goal?

United’s first choice goalkeeper from last season has yet to make a single competitive appearance under Thomas Christiansen who has made new German custodian Felix Wiedwald his clear no 1.

Green looked to be set for his chance as Christiansen made plenty of changes for the first round Carabao Cup tie against Port Vale but the 37-year-old pulled out of the squad with a knee injury.

Speculation was already rife that Green would be unhappy about playing second fiddle and would look to move elsewhere and his omission against Vale only added further fuel to the fire.

But Green took to social media the following day to report that he was “disappointed to miss the game with injury but working hard to get fit and back in contention as quickly as possible.”

Green is now fit and available for selection and Tuesday night’s contest would seem the obvious opportunity for him to attempt to prove a point.

How many changes will Thomas Christiansen make?

Plenty will surely be the answer though Leeds have their fare share of injuries with Matthew Pennington (ankle), Gaetano Berardi (dislocated shoulder), Pablo Hernandez (hip) and Caleb Ekuban (foot) all out.

The game would have provided a perfect opportunity for Souleymane Doukara but he will not feature amid interest in the striker from clubs in Turkey, Italy and England, including Barnsley.

Liam Bridcutt has also now completed his move to Nottingham Forest.

With Chris Wood also settling into life at Burnley and United on with their new striker search, Kemar Roofe is United’s only fit and available first team striker and even Roofe has been used mainly as a winger.

But development squad trio striker Mallik Wilks, versatile forward/no 10 Eoghan Stokes and centre-back Paudie O’Connor have all been drafted into the first team squad for Tuesday night’s game and it is not difficult to see all three featuring.

Striker Wilks might even start unless Christiansen opts to give Roofe another go upfront.

As well as the under-23s trio, Stuart Dallas, Hadi Sacko, Ronaldo Vieira, Mateusz Klich, Conor Shaughnessy, Cameron Borthwick-Jackson and Madger Gomes will also all be hoping to be given the opportunity to start, as will Bailey Peacock-Farrell if all is not well with Green.

What will the crowd be?

Leeds have been very keen to encourage fans to purchase and collect tickets early for Tuesday night’s cup clash with the club having been selling tickets for the game at around 2,000 a day.

Even by Monday evening, the Whites were looking at a crowd of 14,000 with one day of sales remaining.

That figure had increased to 15,300 by Tuesday lunchtime, with 1,700 collections.

Not bad for a Tuesday night cup clash against a side from League Two.

Even better for a team who were supposed to be away from home, with the tie switched to Elland Road due to Newport relaying their pitch at their Rodney Parade home.

Wolverhampton Wanderers manager Nuno Espirito Santo. Picture: Danny Lawson/PA

Vieira red card was ‘turning point’ against Leeds United admits Wolves boss Santo