Home comforts are the key for Leeds United

Rodolph Austin, set to be available again after injury. Picture: IAN HARBER
Rodolph Austin, set to be available again after injury. Picture: IAN HARBER

With tough games ahead at top five sides Leicester and Crystal Palace and a dismal away record to take with them Leeds United appear to be back in must win territory on Saturday.

A run of just one win in 14 away games in the Npower Championship has piled pressure on the home games and the Whites must take advantage against Millwall in an early kick-off at Elland Road on Saturday if they are to maintain their outside chances of promotion.

While winning just three games on their travels in the league, United have triumphed 10 times on home soil and will be banking on three more points against their old rivals from London.

They will also be looking for a slice of revenge after losing a close game 1-0 at Millwall in November, although they will face a side that has proved unpredictable in recent weeks with a run to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, but a run of five straight league defeats that was ended with an impressive 2-1 win at Middlesbrough last Saturday.

Leeds could take some comfort from their latest away game at Blackburn Rovers as they kept a first clean sheet in any game on their travels

this season despite coming up against one of the division’s most prolific strikers in Jordan Rhodes, backed up by another goal scoring forward in DJ Campbell.

But the fact they also failed to find the back of the net concerned manager Neil Warnock with centre-forward Steve Morison still to fully impress since his move from Norwich, although he did get his first goal for Leeds in the midweek win over Blackpool that kept their play-off chances alive.

Warnock has been allowed the relative luxury of naming unchanged line-ups for the last two games and certainly seems now to have settled on his back four with Tom Lees and Lee Peltier forming a centre-back partnership that has generally been effective. But after a failure to create enough clear chances at Blackburn there may be changes further forward with El Hadji Diouf ready to step back in after a rest and Rodolph Austin fit again after an injury kept him out of the last two matches.

Warnock has also spoken about his desire still to bring in another player to the squad as he is looking to delve into the loan market for a winger that would help give his side more attacking options.

But he has been much happier with the last two performances and says there is confidence in the camp going into the three games in the next week.

He said: “This is a big week for us. We need points from the game against Millwall and we need points from the games at Leicester and Palace.

“That’s how it is for us now. But there’s a huge incentive for the players because if we manage that, we’ll go into the last 10 games with a shout.

“The way we’ve played in the last two games has been a breath of fresh air. I’m looking forward to going to Leicester and Palace because I know we’ll cope against those teams and at those grounds. That might not have been the case a week or so ago when everything was doom and gloom.

“The way we all felt back then, we just wanted to give it our all and see where the results took us. The last two games kept the glass half-full.”