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Steve Evans on the message he'll give to Leeds United's squad ahead of Middlesbrough match

Steve Evans says if Leeds United keep a clean sheet against Middlesbrough they'll win.

Steve Evans has told the Yorkshire Evening Post that he intends to stress the importance of putting in a strong defensive performance to his Leeds United squad ahead of their match against Middlesbrough later this evening.

Boro are proving to be one of the strongest teams in the Championship this season, and they currently occupy second place in the table.

And Evans is under no illusions as to the scale of the task his side face this evening, if they are to pick up the three points at Elland Road.

“If we come away with a clean sheet then I think we’ll win the game,” Evans said. “That’s the message I’ll give the players. Obviously we need to be more creative but first and foremost our defending has to be spot on. We can’t give Boro anything.”

Middlesbrough’s main strength this season has actually been their ability to shut opposition sides out, but their additions in January have strengthened their attacking options.

The signings of Jordan Rhodes and Gaston Ramirez have bolstered Middlesbrough’s forward ranks, and both could start against the Whites.

Middlesbrough go into the fixture having failed to win any of their last four matches, meaning they are under pressure to get back on track.

When Middlesbrough and Leeds met earlier in the season, Karanka’s side came out on top - picking up a comfortable 3-0 victory.

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