Journalist says Leeds should ‘never be without’ player who survived ‘beginning of the end’ at Elland Road

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Journalist Jon Howe has said that Leeds United should never be without long-serving defender Luke Ayling who has seen it all at the club.

Ayling has been a Leeds player since 2016, making 243 appearances for the Elland Road side and Howe believed that the conclusion of last season could have spelled the end for Ayling’s Leeds career.

I was at Arsenal last season when Ayling was sent off for a rash challenge in the opening minutes and played no further part in a season that looked like it was running into a sandbank at full speed,” Howe said in his latest column on the official Leeds website.

I’ve never watched a TV replay of the incident because it felt at the time like it could be the last act of Luke Ayling as a Leeds United player, and I wasn’t ready for that. I wasn’t ready for it under any circumstances, particularly not those.

Ayling celebrating with Patrick Bamford and Jack Harrison

And Luke Ayling has never felt like a ‘bit part’ player at Leeds United. Somehow, like the ravens flying away from the Tower of London, Leeds United should probably never be without him.”

Leeds’ vice-captain Ayling has led the side seven times this season in the absence of club captain Liam Cooper and Whites fans will hope he continues to represent their club for a long time.

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