Luke Ayling hails Leeds United's play-off final journey and provides huge future update

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Luke Ayling will be supporting Leeds United from the stands at Wembley

Luke Ayling knows all about the journey Leeds United have been on this season as they push for promotion to the Premier League. The defender joined Middlesbrough on loan in January, but was a key member of the Whites squad for the first half of the season and helped the club emerge through a turbulent spell at the start of the campaign.

A summer exodus followed relegation from the Premier League and that uncertainty around personnel spilled into the Championship campaign as players tried to seal moves away from Elland Road. As such, Daniel Farke found himself being unable to fill a bench at the start of the campaign with the Whites failing to win any of their first three games.

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Reinforcements eventually arrived to settle down the Whites and with that came traction and form as Farke's side began moving towards the upper echelons of the table. With the Whites now just 90 minutes from promotion, ahead of this afternoon's Championship play-off final with Southampton, Ayling has highlighted just how far the Whites have come since those frustrating first few weeks back in the second tier.

"I think they've had a great season," Ayling told Talksport from Boxpark on Wembley Way. "When we came back in August it was no secret that there was loads of boys trying to leave and boys forcing their way out. We had to rebuild the squad.

"Those first few games weren't easy, we were getting on the coach not knowing what team was being played or what boys are getting on the coach. For them to turn it around and to get where they were, the last month has been disappointing and maybe if they'd have kicked on they wouldn't have gone through this, but to get promoted at Wembley there is no better way and hopefully they can get it done.

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"It would be special and I don't think it's a secret that the play-off history at this club hasn't been great, so for this group of lads it would be great. Just to see all the fans in white, it's special. I can't wait to be one of these fans in there. Hopefully we'll see a good game and the boys will be promoted."

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As mentioned above, Ayling spent the second half of the season away from Elland Road with Boro, where he narrowly missed out on a play-off spot himself. His contract at Leeds is due to expire in just a few weeks' time and he is expected to join up with the Teesside outfit on a permanent basis.

Asked about his next step, Ayling neither confirmed nor denied that he would be joining Middlesbrough on a free transfer this summer but he did reveal an announcement is set to be made soon.

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"I think there's news coming pretty soon in the next few days but I had a great time at Middlesbrough, I loved playing for the gaffer and the boys in the dressing room were great. There's news coming tomorrow and I think it will be good news," he added.