Leeds United have been handed a triple injury boost ahead of their trip to the capital this afternoon…
The Athletic’s Phil Hay has delivered an update on the injury crisis at Thorp Arch as the Yorkshiremen head back to the London Stadium to face West Ham United for the second successive weekend, this time in the Premier League.
Indeed, Marcelo Bielsa’s side were knocked out of the FA Cup last Sunday by the Irons but this time around, the Argentine will have a few more players available for selection.
“Team news for West Ham on Sunday – [Patrick] Bamford, Rodrigo and [Pascal] Struijk could all be involved, which is clearly a big and overdue boost,” the ever-reliable reporter tweeted ahead of kick-off.
This will come as a major boost to Leeds.
Bielsa has suffered from persistent and ever-mounting injuries throughout the 2021/22 campaign, so much so that the west Yorkshire giants find themselves at the wrong end of the table.
Right now, they are just six points clear of the relegation zone but some of the teams below them hold games in hand due to recent postponements, so things could quickly change – and that’s out of United’s control.
During last weekend’s defeat, the Argentinian started three academy prospects, whilst there were only three first-team players on the bench. Just last month, he was missing 11 players for the loss to Arsenal.
Leeds have sorely missed the absence of Bamford, who has played only 22 minutes since mid-September.
Without him, Bielsa has had to deploy a whole host of names upfront, usually the likes of Jack Harrison or Daniel James, who are wingers by trade and do not possess the same goalscoring threat and attacking prowess in the penalty box
Struijk offers the side immense versatility in being able to play anywhere along the backline and in midfield, so his involvement bolsters Bielsa’s tactical options tenfold.
Whilst Rodrigo has been one of the side’s biggest creative influences, having averaged 1.6 key passes per game – a feat only bettered by Raphinha (1.8), as per WhoScored.
On the above evidence, fans around Elland Road and across the country should be absolutely delighted – and perhaps a little relieved – heading into today’s Premier League encounter.
Bielsa has been handed a big triple injury boost and that only bolsters their chances of getting revenge down in east London this afternoon.