After a much changed side crashed out of the FA Cup last Sunday, Leeds United are under pressure to perform when they return to the EFL Championship at Blackburn Rovers tonight.
Nothing less than a victory over opponents who are second from bottom of the table will be acceptable to fans after head coach Garry Monk gave 10 of his first teamers a rest at the weekend in order to prioritise the league.
All 10 are expected to return for the trip over the Pennines with the only players in contention to keep their place being Stuart Dallas and Souleymane Doukara.
Monk’s changes were clearly made because of the demands on his players at his time with another important away game to follow on Sunday at Huddersfield and a further midweek match this month, but to justify them the team must now pick up some points.
They will be going for a hat-trick as opponents Blackburn have already been beaten twice by the Whites at Elland Road this season.
They have continued to struggle, but have some quality players in their squad and will have seen the way Sutton and Barnsley the week before got about Leeds and unsettled them out of their comfort zone.
Monk admitted promotion to the Premier League has been the priority and it was vital to keep players fit.
He said: “I have to get the balance right in making sure there’s freshness and energy. We’ve got a lot of games coming up in February.”