GOOD home form will be critical if Leeds United are to pull away from the Premier League relegation zone.

With backing from the fans, the Whites can make Elland Road a really difficult place to visit with Leicester City next up at LS11 on Sunday (2pm).

In common with many clubs, Leeds did better on the road last season, taking 30 of their 59-point tally on their travels with an absence of home fans cited as a major reason for the change to the status quo.

The fixture against the Foxes is a good example. It is almost a year to the day since Brendan Rodgers’ side thumped Leeds 4-1 at Elland Road - yet on New Year’s Eve, United gained revenge with a 3-1 triumph at Leicester.

Despite their shaky start to the campaign, Leeds have not played too badly at home. They have beaten Watford, performed well in draws against Everton and Wolves, and were unlucky to lose at the death against high-flying West Ham. Only classy Liverpool have blown Leeds away with their 3-0 win on September 12.

Enormous vocal backing from the supporters helped Leeds gain a last-gasp point-saving penalty against Wolves in their last home match and fans will need to generate a similar atmosphere if they are to overcome the Foxes.

Leeds followed that draw with a much-needed 2-1 victory at bottom club Norwich on Saturday. Although the points were most welcome, the Leeds performance still left plenty to be desired.

Should Jamie Shackleton fail to shake off the muscular injury which saw him limp off at Carrow Road, the player who replaced him, 19-year-old Cody Drameh, could be in line for his first Premier League start.

Coach Marcelo Bielsa may have had that scenario in mind when the London-born full-back was left out of Tuesday’s Under-21 side which lost 5-3 at Salford in the EFL Trophy.

There is an outside chance that Patrick Bamford may be available after missing the last seven matches with an ankle injury. Should he not be ready then Bielsa will weigh up his options in attack, where Rodrigo, Dan James and Jack Harrison have all been tried as the focal point of the attack without much success.

Another option would be to start with young Joe Geldhardt, who was again in fine form at Salford before being taken off at the interval. However, it is unlikely that Bielsa would hand full Premier League debuts to both Drameh and Geldhardt against a Leicester side packed with top players.

The Foxes have been hit by a sickness bug this week, with midfielder James Maddison and Harvey Barnes, son of York City hero Paul, among those struck down. Both missed Leicester’s 1-1 home draw in the Europa League against Spartak Moscow but are expected to be face Leeds.

This is the final fixture before another international break, with Leeds not in action again until the November 21 trip to Antonio Conte’s Tottenham Hotspur.