Leeds United: Whites get Kilkenny boost

Leeds United midfielder Neil Kilkenny is expected to be fit for the start of pre-season training after X-rays revealed no major damage to his injured ankle.

The Australian international was hurt during the final game of United's League One campaign and feared he may have broken a bone in his ankle, but tests have revealed nothing more than a badly-sprained joint.

The positive results should see him recover his fitness before the beginning of July, when United's players are scheduled to begin pre-season training ahead of their first friendly at York City's KitKat Crescent on July 12.

Kilkenny sustained his injury half-an-hour into the second leg of the recent play-off semi-final between Leeds and Millwall, limping off the field shortly after blocking a shot on the edge of his own box.

He attempted to run off the injury but was eventually forced to bow to the pain, and he left Elland Road on crutches with a cast on his injured leg.

Manager Simon Grayson said: "It's good news for Neil in as much as he hasn't broken anything or done really serious damage and we're expecting him to be ready to start pre-season with the rest of the players.

"The ankle's badly sprained, so he's going to need a fair amount of treatment, but it doesn't look like it's going to be a problem for him or us."

Kilkenny, who will undergo surgery on his nose and mouth this summer to aid his breathing, missed last year's pre-season programme after being selected by Australia for the Olympic Games in Beijing, but he has around six weeks to recover from the damage he sustained against Millwall.

Left-back Alan Sheehan, who finished the season on loan at Crewe Alexandra, is the only other player in United's treatment room having suffered an ankle problem of his own while at Gresty Road.

The Irish defender, who agreed a three-year deal with Leeds after joining the club on a free transfer from Leicester City in July, has played little part at Elland Road since Grayson's appointment as manager, last featuring against Carlisle United on January 10.