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Steve Evans says he knows how painful Leeds selection decisions have been for midfielder Luke Murphy

Leeds United boss Steve Evans says he knows it has not been easy recently for Luke Murphy.

Leeds United recalled Luke Murphy into the side against Cardiff City and the midfielder stepped up to help the Whites to a 2-0 away win.

Murphy was one of Leeds' best players last season but he has fallen down the pecking order this campaign, with head coach Steve Evans bringing in midfielders Liam Bridcutt and Toumani Diagouraga.

Diagouraga was left on the bench for the fixture, and with Tom Adeyemi ineligible against his parent club, Murphy came back into the starting line up for the first time since the 1-1 draw with Brentford in January.

Speaking to BBC Radio Leeds after the game, Evans explained Murphy had been impressing in training, and with Diagouraga looking tired, he felt it was the right time to freshen the side up.

Evans said he knew this season has not been easy for Murphy, but was impressed with his performance.

He said: "I know how much it hurts him when he's not in the team. Luke put in a real assured performance along with Liam Bridcutt, who never stops working for the team while he's on the pitch.

He added: "Luke Murphy stopped so many attacks going through the middle."

Murphy along with Lewis Cook were the midfielders who won the ball back on the highest amount of occasions in the win over Cardiff, doing so six times each.

  Ball RecoveriesMins Played
Lewis Cook 6 90
Luke Murphy 6 90
Alex Mowatt 4 76
Liam Bridcutt 3 71
Stuart Dallas 3 14
Toumani Diagouraga 2 19

Murphy appeared to play himself back into contention with his performance, and he will want to finish the season strongly.

The three points takes Leeds into 15th place, with their next game away against Blackburn Rovers, who are one place below them in the standings.


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