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Morning Leeds-in for 24 January: Will Matthew Pennington take his chance?

Everton loanee has a chance to supplant captain Liam Cooper in the starting lineup

Leeds United v Reading - Sky Bet Championship - Elland Road Photo by Danny Lawson/PA Images via Getty Images

Matthew Pennington has a chance to claim the starting central defender spot from Liam Cooper after the captain will sit for four games after receiving his second red card of the season.

It was a cruel twist of fate that saw Pennington get injured after only 60 minutes in Leeds United’s opening match at Bolton Wanderers. Pennington had looked very good during preseason, making a number of key tackles against Oxford United in the final preseason match. He played well against Bolton as well, until injury sidelined him. Pennington has yet to start back-to-back league matches, and he’s been used as a late-game cooler by Thomas Christiansen, brought in for the final few minutes to help kill off the match.

Now Pennington has the chance to grab the starting lineup that many people thought he would be in competition for when he signed on loan from Everton during the summer. It’s understood that Leeds are keen to make the deal permanent during the summer transfer window, and with Mason Holgate, a central defender even younger than Pennington, getting regular first-team minutes under new Everton manager Sam Allardyce, Everton may be persuaded to allow the young defender to make the Elland Road switch permanent.

If Pennington is as impressive as he’s been so far this season in the limited minutes he’s had during the four match stretch that Cooper is absent, the young defender may yet get the starting spot that many envisioned he would get when he joined last August.

On to the links.

Leeds United Links

Leeds officially sign Leyton Orient teenager Sam Dalby. [Through It All Together]

Swedish teenager Erion Sadiku on trial at Leeds. [Through It All Together]

Six things Leeds need to do to make the playoffs. [Yorkshire Evening Post]

England and English Football Links

Phil Neville named as the new manager for the England Women’s National team, and it’s a disaster. [SBNation]

Manchester City beat Bristol City 3-2 and advanced 5-3 on aggregate to reach the finals of the League Cup. [Bitter and Blue]

An Everton fan pens a heartfelt farewell to Aaron Lennon. [Royal Blue Mersey]

World Football Links

Mexico’s LigaMX is the top football league in North America, and they are leaving money on the table when making their TV deals. [FMF State of Mind]

New Philadelphia Union Designated Player David Accam is signed through 2020, meaning that the Union aren’t in danger of losing him as a free agent at the end of the year, as was feared when the trade was announced. [Brotherly Game]

Atlanta United is the only team in MLS willing to spend money on transfer fees, but the rest could easily afford to pay more than they do right now. The question is, will they? [SBNation]