Steve Evans says Scott Wootton could return for Leeds next game

Leeds United

Leeds United boss Steve Evans is refusing to cast Scott Wootton aside despite Lewie Coyle's good performance against Fulham.

Scott Wootton scored a disastrous own goal at the weekend which saw Leeds United exit the FA Cup.

He was left on the bench for last night's 1-1 draw with Fulham, with Lewie Coyle taking his place and impressing on his first ever start for the club.

Despite Coyle's strong defensive display, head coach Steve Evans insists Wootton could still go straight back into the side to face Brighton and Hove Albion on Monday.

He told BBC Radio Leeds that Wootton was 'broken-hearted' as a result of his own goal, and left him out accordingly after seeing his demeanour at training in the lead up to the Fulham clash.

Evans said: "When you look at a kid who is broken-hearted, it was easy for me to rest him. I've supported him - I've not thrown him to the lions, I've taken him out and I've protected him.

"We've all seen some of the reactions [from fans] at which I was disappointed with, but I've seen some real positive comments from supporters tonight.

"If it's right and he looks right at the end of the week, and he should play at Brighton, he'll play at Brighton."

Evans added a warning for Coyle, stating that he would have no hesitation taking him out of the side, stating: "He needs to add to that or I'll take him straight out. I will play him in the games he'll sail through."

The away tie to Brighton is not a 'sail through' game by any means, with the Seagulls winning 4-0 away to Bristol City last night. In fact, away from the glare of home fans could be the ideal scenario for Evans to put Wootton back in.

It could be however that neither player get the nod at the Amex, with Gaetano Berardi playing for the under-21s on Monday, after missing several months with an ankle injury.

Evans added that he was desperate to get Berardi involved against Fulham, and would weigh up bringing him in too, later in the week.

He said: "He's a super player, he really is a super player. Suddenly we've got competition where we had none. We've got Scott, Coyley and Berardi back. We'll pick based on what our eyes tell us, not what other people tell us."


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