El Hadji Diouf says the players at Leeds United have to keep working hard and stick together after losing their last two games.
After a promising start to the season, Leeds have picked up just one point from their last three games, a run of results that has seen Leeds slip to fourteenth in the championship.
The injury list at Elland Road is also getting bigger. Paul Green has been out since the opening day and fellow midfielder David Norris was ruled out for a month during the last international break.
Last season`s leading goalscorer Ross McCormack is the latest player to join the long-term injured with the striker not expected back much before Christmas.
This season`s leading goalscorer Luciano Becchio and defender Adam Drury are facing a race against time to be fit for today`s game with Nottingham Forest.
Despite everything that seems to be conspiring against Leeds at the moment, Diouf says the players need to stick together and work hard and he still believes the club can finish in the top six this season.
Diouf believes the side should draw inspiration from last season`s championship champions Reading.
Reading put the disappointment of defeat in the play-off final and a poor start to the season behind them.
Reading had won just four of their first sixteen games last season before a tremendous run in the second half of the season saw them storm to the title and Diouf wants the players to draw inspiration from the royals.
Speaking on Yorkshire Radio, Diouf said, ‘We need to keep going, we have a lot of games, and we have a young squad who are still learning..
‘We have so many games we have to keep working hard. We will stick together and do it together.
‘The lads need to show desire and quality. The best thing to learn from last year is Reading. No one thought they would do it, but they got promoted. We just need to keep going and I think we will finish in the top six.”
Diouf is currently with the club on a short-term deal until the New Year having joined on the eve of the season opener against Shrewsbury Town.
The former African footballer of the year had no pre-season having left Doncaster Rovers at the end of last season and despite making eight appearances this season, he admits he is still not fully fit. “I am not 100% ready yet but I am ok. I am still working hard on the training pitch. I know the fans want so much from me and the team, I will do everything I can to make the fans happy,” added Diouf.
Diouf will be hoping to help Leeds this afternoon gain revenge on Nottingham Forest.
Forest inflicted Leeds heaviest ever home defeat when the two clubs met in March, when they returned to the midlands having put seven past Leeds in a 7-3 win.
They come into this game as the only unbeaten side remaining in the championship this season having won two and drawn four of their opening six games, so today would be the perfect time to start a Reading style run for Leeds.
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