Cooper targets 'fairytale end' at Leeds

Leeds United captain Liam Cooper
Leeds United captain Liam Cooper has made 284 appearances for the club since joining from Chesterfield in August 2014 [Rex Features]

Leeds United captain Liam Cooper has said it would be "a dream come true" to end his decade at the club with victory in the Championship play-off final against Southampton.

The Scotland defender, 32, is out of contract in the summer and has not had talks about extending his stay at Elland Road.

"It would be the fairytale ending," Cooper told BBC Radio Leeds.

"Those conversations haven't happened yet so it's not the time to talk about my future but it would be a dream come true for it to end like that.

"I'm looking forward to it whether I play 90 minutes, 120 minutes, two minutes or I don't get on at all. It's about what is best for the club and I'll do everything I can to get the boys rallied and up for it.

"There's no feeling like achieving success at this club."

Cooper has only started one league match since 1 January and was brought on as a late substitute in the 4-0 win over Norwich in the second leg of their play-off semi-final.

"It was unbelievable to get those minutes at the end of the Norwich game," he added. "It takes moments like that to realise how appreciated you are around the club.

"It meant a lot to me and my family. It was a moment that puts the hairs up on the back of your neck."

Cooper puts side before self

Cooper joined the Whites from Chesterfield in August 2014 and has made 284 appearances for the club.

He was part of the team that ended their 16-year absence from the Premier League when they won promotion in 2020 under Marcelo Bielsa - one of 13 managers Cooper has played under at Leeds.

Cooper has only played 15 times in the league this season and acknowledges his position in the group has changed.

"I know I'm a likeable and approachable person and when you're not playing you have to take on a different role," he said.

"It's easy to sulk and feel sorry for yourself but that gets nobody anywhere, it's a selfish approach. You've just got to go and motivate the lads and get them up for every single day because you need to be at your best in every training session to get those 1%s.

"I try to lead by example and maintain the standards in training."

Norwich thumping a blueprint for Whites

Leeds ended the season with just one win in their final six games and drew the first leg of their play-off semi-final 0-0 at Carrow Road.

However, they put in a superb performance in the second leg to run out 4-0 aggregate winners.

Cooper believes that they must replicate that level of performance against the Saints, who did the double over them in the league.

"I think the Norwich game was a great game for us, that was us back to our best," he said.

"We were clinical, we put it on Norwich and we forced them into submission."

He continued: "We know the threats that Southampton bring. They play a possession-style game so at times we'll have to suffer without the ball.

"The plan has already been put into place and we started working on it on Sunday. The boys will be confident going into it and the best team on the day will come out victorious."