By Saikat Mandal

26th Oct, 2021 | 6:10pm

Luke Ayling posts message on Instagram, Kalvin Phillips responds

Leeds United defender Luke Ayling has posted a message on Instagram ahead of the Whites’ Carabao Cup Cup clash against Arsenal.

Ayling has been suffering from a knee injury and has been out of action for a while. The right-back has recently returned to training but he is yet to return to the first-team squad.

He hasn’t played since the 1-1 draw against Newcastle in September, and he is dying to get back on to the pitch.

He has posted a message on Instagram, saying – “Missing it a lot”.

His club teammate – Kalvin Phillips – has responded to his post, saying – ‘Back soon my boy’, while Leeds skipper Liam Cooper added – ‘Won’t be long brother’.

Difficult start

Leeds have made a poor start to the season, having picked up just one win in the league so far.

They are heading into this match on the back of a 1-1 draw against Wolves on Saturday. Although it was a much-improved performance, and that Leeds deserved more from the game, they couldn’t turn it into a victory.

Marcelo Bielsa’s squad has been weakened by injuries to several key players in recent months, including Ayling and Phillips.

Robin Koch is a long-term absentee, while Raphinha has also been absent at times. Phillips has only returned to the bench, and he is lacking match sharpness.

Then, there is Patrick Bamford. The England striker was the top-scorer at the club last season, and his absence has been terribly felt.

Bielsa loves to operate with a smaller squad, and Leeds are not blessed with rich depth in quality, which is currently hurting them badly.

In other Leeds United news, a Sky Sports pundit has urged the Whites to sign this international ace amid transfer speculation.