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Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Lively Leeds have the tools to test Wednesday

Pressure is growing on Carvalhal

Leeds centre-back Pontus Jansson
1 of 1

Sky Bet Championship
Sky Sports Football & Main Event 12.15pm Sunday 

Promotion-chasing Leeds have lost on their last two Sky Bet Championship road trips but they can stop the rot by taking at least a point from their Yorkshire derby at Sheffield Wednesday.

Leeds slipped from first to third after losing 3-1 at Cardiff on Tuesday but there were mitigating circumstances.

They were weaker than usual in midfield with key man Eunan O'Kane ruled out due to illness and they lost captain Liam Cooper to a 45th-minute red card.

Cooper is suspended but O'Kane resumes his partnership with Kalvin Phillips which has been such a key aspect of Leeds's strong start to the season.

Phillips and O'Kane have won plenty of midfield battles this season, providing the platform for flair players Pablo Hernandez, Samuel Saiz and Ezgjan Alioski to weave their magic.

Leeds will also be stronger up front with on loan Hamburg centre-forward Pierre-Michel Lasogga set to return to the side and, if they can get back to the standards they were producing only a few weeks ago they will cause problems for an under-pressure Wednesday side who are performing well below expectations.

Wednesday have reached the playoffs two seasons running but are short of confidence after losses at home to Sheffield United (4-2) and away to Birmingham (1-0) which have left them in mid-table.

The pressure is growing on manager Carlos Carvalhal, whose side look poor-value favourites to return to winning ways.

Leeds can avoid defeat and are a tempting bet in receipt of a 0.25 goal start on the Asian handicap, ensuring a half-stakes profit in the event of a draw and a full return if they win.

Leeds +0.25 on Asian handicap
1pt 19-20 bet365, Betfred

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Team news

Sheffield Wednesday
Keiren Westwood (ribs) will not be available until after the international break. Glenn Loovens (hip), Sam Hutchinson and Almen Abdi (both knee) have returned to training but the game may come too soon. Fernando Forestieri (knee) and George Boyd (shoulder) are out.

Liam Cooper serves a one-match ban after his dismissal at Cardiff on Tuesday. Eunan O'Kane is available after illness and Vurnon Anita will play after being rested in midweek.

Key stat
Sheffield Wednesday have not kept a clean sheet in their last seven games.

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Sheffield Wednesday have not kept a clean sheet in their last seven games
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