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Leeds youngster Kalvin Phillips tops October charts in Championship for most tackles won

Leeds United manager Garry Monk before the match

Leeds fans may have wondered how the side would cope without Liam Bridcutt, but one player has definitely risen to the task.

Liam Bridcutt Leeds United in action with Jack Payne of Huddersfield TownLiam Bridcutt has not played since September

When Liam Bridcutt picked up an injury in Leeds United's win over Blackburn Rovers in September, many supporters were worried about what his absence would mean for the balance of the team.

The former Sunderland man provides the defence with a huge amount of protection, so Garry Monk would have known that picking the right replacement would be a key decision.

Leeds United manager Garry MonkLeeds United manager Garry Monk

And while not everything appears to have gone right for Monk lately, this is one call that the statistics suggest he has got spot on.

As the table below shows, since the beginning of October, Kalvin Phillips has made more successful challenges than any other player in the Championship.

  PositionTeamWon Tackle
Kalvin Phillips MF Leeds 11
Albert Adomah MF Aston Villa 10
Chris Cohen MF Forest 10
Luke Ayling DF Leeds 9
Jonathan Hogg MF Huddersfield 8
Cole Kpekawa DF Barnsley 8
Lucas Piazon MF Fulham 7
Oliver Norwood MF Brighton 7
Eunan O'Kane MF Leeds 7
Hadi Sacko FW Leeds 7

The 20-year-old's form will undoubtedly please a huge number of Leeds fans as he was perhaps the one of the latest crop of academy graduates that seemed destined to fall off the radar before this season.

After emerging on the scene at Elland Road, Phillips struggled to make an impact last season and was only given a handful of opportunities under Steve Evans.

Blackburn's Hope Akpan and Leeds' Kalvin Phillips in actionBlackburn's Hope Akpan and Leeds' Kalvin Phillips in action

However, Monk's arrival has seen the prospect become much more important, and his tackling statistics for the month so far suggest that he is definitely beginning to find the right path.

Perhaps just as encouraging for Monk is the presence of three more of his players in the top 10. 

Derby's Ikechi Anya in action with Leeds' Luke AylingLuke Ayling is one of three other Leeds stars in the top 10

Luke Ayling has made a mixed start to life with the Whites but is clearly doing well when it comes to competing with the best wingers in the division. 

Meanwhile, Phillips' partner in the holding midfield position, Eunan O'Kane is also contributing in Bridcutt's absence.

But it is perhaps the presence of Hadi Sacko on the list that will surprise the most people. On his day, the winger can be devastating going forward, but the loan star is also proving that he is not afraid to get stuck in as he is one of a number of players who have made seven successful challenges this month. 

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