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Alex Mowatt poised to rejoin leeds United midfield
Teenager Alex Mowatt could be in line to return for Leeds United as they seek a return to winning ways at home to Blackburn tomorrow afternoon.
Sunday’s 2-1 loss at Nottingham Forest ended a run of just one defeat in nine Championship matches for Brian McDermott’s men.
That blemish was also against Blackburn, 1-0 at Ewood Park on November 30, but Mowatt’s return could provide a welcome midfield boost.
The 18-year-old was withdrawn at half-time in the 0-0 home draw against Barnsley before Christmas and missed the away matches against Blackpool on Boxing Day and Forest.
Mowatt has had an injection in his back to try and solve a problem that occurred during the summer and McDermott is hopeful he will be available for selection against Blackburn.
The Elland Road boss said: “We took Alex out of the team to make sure that was sorted. He had an ongoing problem in the summer and that was something we were trying to take care of.
“He has now had this injection and we think that has made a difference to him. He was moving really freely before but in the Barnsley match, in the first half, you could see he wasn’t moving the way he was previously.
“That’s why we had to take him off in that game and that is why we have had to rest him. But now we are hopeful that he is going to be all right.”
McDermott is also hoping to have Paddy Kenny available after he came through the full 90 minutes against Forest.
The Leeds goalkeeper collided with Greg Halford in the early minutes of the match and took a heavy blow to his ankle, which meant that Marius Zaliukas took over goal-kicking duties for the remainder of the afternoon.
McDermott said: “Paddy did well to get through the game on Sunday. He took that tackle really early on in the game and his ankle was swollen up and we weren’t sure if we’d get him out for the second half.
“But he did and he did fantastically well. He couldn’t kick the ball but in the second half they didn’t really trouble us, apart from the guy (Matt Derbyshire) that smashed it in the top corner.”
United continue to be without midfield duo Paul Green and David Norris, as well as keeper Jamie Ashdown, but McDermott is hoping to have Noel Hunt available for selection again soon.
“Noel is back in training now and he is playing and moving in the way that I know he can,” said the Leeds manager.
“Obviously from Noel’s point of view, he wants to get out there and show the fans what he can do.”