Jeremy Corbyn says Labour can win general election if he keeps attracting new voters

Jeremy Corbyn insisted today that Labour was increasingly united on the big issues, even as a showdown meeting with party critics looms.

The Labour leader – who is expected to be re-elected by a big margin next weekend – pointed to opposition to further spending cuts and new grammar schools as policies that are bringing the party together.

Tomorrow, Mr Corbyn and his deputy, Tom Watson, will go head-to-head at a crucial meeting of the party’s ruling National Executive Committee (NEC), over rival plans for electing the Shadow Cabinet.

Meanwhile, centrist Labour MPs fear that Mr Corbyn’s allies will try to force their deselection by local constituency parties – something threatened by Unite union leader Len McCluskey yesterday.

But Mr Corbyn, asked about his rebellious MPs, said: “Of course I’m going to reach out to them as I have reached out to them in the past.”