By Mark Smith

11th Mar, 2020 | 7:30pm

MOT View: Wednesday announcement could prove Leeds 28y/o holds big key to promotion

There aren’t many players in better form in the Championship right now than Leeds United defender Luke Ayling.

Leeds have gone on a five-match unbeaten run, managing to keep a clean sheet in each and every outing to send them back to the top of the table.

The five-clean sheets are impressive, but the fact that Ayling has managed to score three goals in the past month proves he is critical.

His form has been rewarded too. The 28-year-old was announced as the PFA Championship Player of the Month award for February.

Ayling has been given heavy criticism in the past at Elland Road, but there are no questions that the defender is now a critical part of this promotion push.

Marcelo Bielsa has always given his full-backs the reign to run forward, but the main difference this month is that Ayling is taking huge advantage of that by popping up with vital goals.

Marcelo Bielsa’s system majorly relies on his full-backs to get forward and cause the danger for the opposing side with the sheer numbers in the final third.

The 28-year-old has the highest WhoScored match average rating this season and has been involved in more goals than Helder Costa.

On top of that, Ayling also completed the most accurate passes of any player in the entire Championship last month, making him a massive vocal point.

Ayling staying this form along with Stuart Dallas will make Leeds a hard machine to stop in the remaining two months, and they could hold the key to promotion to the Premier League after so long away.

In other Leeds United news, this report contains the Whites’ stance on permanent deal for Illan Meslier after consecutive clean-sheets