Liam Cooper delivers verdict on Leeds promotion prospects

Liam Cooper of Leeds United looks on during the Sky Bet Championship match between Barnsley and Leeds United at Oakwell Stadium on November 25, 2017 in Barnsley, England.

Leeds currently sit in sixth place in the Championship table.

Dejected Leeds player Liam Cooper reacts after The Emirates FA Cup Third Round match between Newport County and Leeds United at Rodney Parade on January 7, 2018 in Newport, Wales.

Leeds United captain Liam Cooper has told the club's official website that the Whites have the best chance of gaining automatic promotion since the defender joined the Yorkshire giants in the summer of 2014.

Leeds currently sit in sixth position under manager Thomas Christiansen after suffering a surprise loss to Birmingham City before failing to beat Nottingham Forest at Elland Road.

However, they remain just six points behind second-placed Derby County and have the chance to get back to winning ways against Mick McCarthy's Ipswich Town on Saturday afternoon at Portman Road.

Leeds captain Liam Cooper is sent off by Kevin Friend after earning a second yellow card and a sending off during the Sky Bet Championship match between Cardiff City and Leeds United at...

Cooper, 26, has been one of the first names on Christiansen's team sheet this season, starring alongside Sweden international Pontus Jansson at centre-back and he reckons Leeds are in with a shout of finishing second.

"We're definitely going in the right direction," Cooper said. "I can keep telling the lads just keep plugging away. We're six points off second, and in my opinion, this is the best chance since I've been at the club we've had to really have a go at that second spot.

"I'll be doing all I can, as will the lads to really grasp that and give ourselves a right good chance. We've got a lot more energy than teams we play; a lot more flair in the team. We're a new group but I'm surprised with how quickly we've come together."

Tom Bradshaw of Barnsley and Liam Cooper of Leeds United in action during the Sky Bet Championship match between Barnsley and Leeds United at Oakwell Stadium on November 25, 2017 in...

Former Chesterfield defender Cooper, who joined the club in July 2014, has made 24 appearances in all competitions for the club this season and helped prevent opposition from scoring in 10 of those outings.

He is expected to start alongside Jansson once again on Saturday, as Leeds look to take advantage of Ipswich's dismal form which has seen the Tractor Boys lose four out of their last five games, drawing the other clash against QPR.

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