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Football League

Neil Warnock hopeful of naming unchanged side when Leeds United play Leicester

Leeds are pushing for a Championship play-off place

Leeds manager Neil Warnock hopes to name an unchanged side against Leicester in tonight's npower Championship match as he continues his late bid to secure a play-off place.

Leeds beat Millwall 1-0 on Saturday thanks to a Stephen Warnock penalty after Ross McCormack had missed from the spot, and they must now defeat fifth-placed Leicester, who suffered a 1-0 defeat to Ipswich at the weekend.

The win left the Elland Road-based club six points adrift of the top six with 12 games remaining, and the Whites boss wants to pick up where he left off and continue the three-game unbeaten run in the league.

He told the club's official website: "We now have Leicester City and Crystal Palace away. They don't lose many at home and our away record is abysmal so it was important to get three points on Saturday to keep us in touch.

"We've now had three clean sheets in a row and are improving every game. We've had three games now and three good results."

The Leeds boss is keen to name an unchanged side for the match but is waiting on the fitness of Luke Varney, who was carried off on a stretcher on Saturday after he was caught up in a challenge by Stephen Warnock.

"(Varney's leg is) badly bruised," the manager said.

"He's had a lot of compression over the weekend, and Luke will want to play so if there is a chance he'll play.

"I'd like to keep the same team if we can and leave it alone."

Meanwhile, Cardiff midfielder Peter Whittingham has urged his team-mates to get over a double disappointment and bounce back in tonight's meeting with Derby.

The Bluebirds saw their lead at the top of the table slashed to five points courtesy of Saturday's 2-1 reverse at Middlesbrough - their second defeat in three games following a loss to Brighton two weeks ago.

Cardiff still have a game in hand on second-placed Hull, though, and Whittingham thinks recent results have only been a minor blip and are nothing to be too concerned about.

He told walesonline.co.uk: "This is our first away defeat since November and it's about bouncing back.

"We have done that before and need to do it again against Derby. That's the time to put a few wrongs right.

"There's 12 games to go and we are confident (about winning promotion). We are a good team and we believe this will be a minor setback.

"But wins are essential now. That can open gaps, but we have to win on Tuesday."

Hull manager Steve Bruce hailed his side's intensity after they bounced back from a heavy defeat against Bolton to beat Birmingham 5-2 and move back into second place behind Cardiff.

George Boyd and Gedo both scored twice while there was also a goal for Robert Koren as the Tigers hit five goals at home for the first time since March 2008.

"I thought the front two put on a wonder show," Bruce told the club's official website ahead of their match against Crystal Palace.

"Especially George Boyd. His work-rate, his effort, his intelligence, the whole thing - he looked the real deal and it was a great start for him.

"I've always been a big admirer of him, but I didn't realise he was that good. He was certainly worth the money people have paid to come and watch."

In the other games, third-placed Watford face Sheffield Wednesday, Brighton travel to bottom side Bristol City, Millwall host struggling Wolves, and Boro will look to record another win at Huddersfield.

Elsewhere, Bolton play Lancashire rivals Blackburn, Peterborough face Charlton, Nottingham Forest take on Ipswich, Burnley are at home to Barnsley and Birmingham host Blackpool.