Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Doncaster V Leeds Pre-view

Simon Grayson will freshen up Leeds United’s line-up as the Whites approach their second game in three days at Yorkshire rivals Doncaster Rovers in the Carling Cup.The Whites put in a heroic display at Championship favourites West Ham on Sunday – a 90th-minute leveller from the superbly impressive Adam Clayton sealing a 2-2 draw – which was the least Grayson’s side deserved.But after an energy-sapping afternoon in hot London sunshine, the Whites boss admits there will be changes for tonight’s second round tie at the Keepmoat.Both midfielder Michael Brown (calf) and striker Billy Paynter (thigh) remain doubtful with fellow frontmen Luciano Becchio (hamstring) and Davide Somma (knee) definitely out.
“We’ll have one or two people coming into the team because they might need an opportunity to play,” said Grayson.“We’ll see where everyone is (in terms of fitness) but it’s a game we want to win, and then we can concentrate on Ipswich after that.”Likely candidates to come into the team include midfielder Ramon Nunez and winger Lloyd Sam who both came on as second half substitutes at West Ham as well as the likes of defenders Andy O’Brien and Paul Connolly – unused on the bench at the weekend.However, recent recruit Brown remains a doubt and Grayson is grateful for his squad’s strength in depth.Of Brown, Grayson said: “He had a calf strain and that made the decision to bring Jonny Howson back in slightly easier.“I also brought Gradel back in for Nunez on Sunday because it was an opportunityfor him to shine and he’s a fantastic talent. He showed a lot of character after missing the penalty too, and he was a constant threat.“I’m delighted that we’ve got players like that to bring in because we had to do it at West Ham.”United’s opponents Doncaster, meanwhile, are suffering with all sorts of problems, currently sitting bottom of the Championship and with a whole host of players missing.Star striker Billy Sharp, Ryan Mason, James Chambers and Martin Woods are all out while on-loan duo Reece Brown and Milan Lalkovic are not eligible to play.However, Brian Stock, Shelton Martis, James Hayter and James O’Connor have all returned to training from injury and may come into contention.

One man expecting the Whites to take the League Cup seriously and book their place in round three is United legend Eddie Gray who was mightily impressed with Sunday’s draw at West Ham.

“I think Simon will pay a lot of attention to the League Cup,” said Gray.

“I think he will make a few changes but I still think we should be too strong for a Doncaster side that have started averagely and are struggling for players

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