Why Leeds United and Garry Monk are proud about Chris Wood’s player of season nomination

Leeds United striker Chris Wood.
Leeds United striker Chris Wood.
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Head coach Garry Monk says Leeds United are “proud” that Chris Wood has been nominated for the Championship player of the year award – with the crucial help of his team-mates.

Wood is involved in a three-way battle for the Sky Bet Championship Player Of The Season award, locking horns with Newcastle United’s Dwight Gayle and Brighton’s Anthony Knockaert.

Directing the ship: Leeds United boss Garry Monk

Directing the ship: Leeds United boss Garry Monk

United’s New Zealand international leads the Championship goalscoring charts with 24 goals, three ahead of his nearest rival Gayle, while Knockaert has scored 13 times and created seven assists. Wood’s achievements have led Reading striker Yann Kermorgant to label Leeds a one-man team who have “no plan-B” should their top scorer be unavailable.

But while applauding his top striker on his achievements, Monk insists the forward would be the first to attribute his success to his team-mates.

Asked for his view on Wood’s nomination, Monk beamed: “I think quite rightly so as well. He has been fantastic. Chris is an important part of what we are doing here but I am sure he will be the first to tell you that he has given big thanks to his team-mates for putting him in a position where he can be nominated like that.

“But we are very proud of that, we are very proud of him but he knows there’s a lot of work to be done. He is very focused on the football and those things come at the end of the season, they don’t come during it, so he is focused on the football and ready to keep on helping the team in these coming games.”

Leeds will face the outspoken Kermorgant and his Reading team-mates at the Madejski tomorrow evening and Monk has already branded the Royals striker’s comments about Wood and Leeds as wide of the mark. Monk quipped: “I can’t agree with those comments. In that first game against them, Chris actually came off the pitch after 30 minutes. We went on for the rest of that game, performed well, extended our lead, kept a clean sheet and took the three points. So with those comments, I could possibly agree that if Chris had stayed on the pitch we might have won by a bigger margin.”