Liam Cooper has admitted that Leeds United being denied the opportunity to celebrate a potential promotion with the club’s fans and their families is tough to take, with the remainder of the season to be played behind closed doors, if at all.
Leeds are sat top of the Championship table and in pole position to convert that into Premier League football. There’s nine games of the 2019/20 season to be played, with Marcelo Bielsa’s side seven points clear of third placed Fulham.
However, a ball hasn’t been kicked in the Championship since the first weekend of March as public safety takes priority across the country.
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In Leeds, the clash with Charlton Athletic at Elland Road on May 2nd had been earmarked as their opportunity to celebrate a Premier League return, which Cooper admits was hard to take as the day passed without a ball being kicked.
“It was very difficult,” Cooper told Leeds Live as he discussed what the first weekend in May could’ve meant. “It was really tough. It sort of felt like it had been stolen from us a little bit.
“That could have been our day and our moment to enjoy it with the fans and our families.
“We’ve so sacrificed so much, but we’re going to have to sacrifice more, sacrifice playing in front of our fans, sacrifice our families being able to watch us.”
Cooper and his teammates have returned to training at Thorp Arch now, with a view to restarting the season and playing out the final nine games.
Should things start up again, Leeds do have to play Fulham at Elland Road, but given the buffer of West Brom between the two sides, they can be confident of turning a table-topping position into promotion.
Over the last two years, Leeds have been working towards winning promotion under Marcelo Bielsa, with Cooper right at the heart of that.
The centre-back has improved massively and deserves the chance to lead Leeds to the Premier League the proper way.
Of course, fans won’t be present, but if the remaining nine games are played, Leeds have a great opportunity to earn Cooper a chance to lift silverware.
That, even without fans, would mean a lot to him.
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