The Yorkshire giants welcome the Midlands side to Elland Road to begin the 2022/23 season but the American head coach will not have the services of winger Luis Sinisterra after he picked up an injury in their pre-season friendly against Crystal Palace.
Marsch did, however, provide some encouragement over his return during his pre-game press conference, hinting that he could be involved next week instead.
“Luis was on the pitch today, and looking very good, getting closer and closer to his top speed, so I would assume that he would be in training next week,” he said. “Hopefully available for the weekend after, let’s see.”
Whilst there are promising signs that the 23-year-old wide man will return in the near future, it will be a gutting blow to Marsch to not have him avaialble for this weekend’s encounter.
“It’s a blow because I think the Leeds United fans were desperate to see him,” claimed former Leeds striker Noel Whelan. “He’s that Raphinha replacement and someone with the skill to get you off the edge of your seat.
“It’s disappointing that he won’t be playing against Wolves, but it gives someone else a massive chance to come in and impress.”
Indeed, Raphinha was sold to Barcelona during the summer and his goals and creativity will be hard to replace. He was the only Leeds player to surpass double figures (11 goals) in the 2021/22 Premier League and led the squad for key passes created (1.9 per game), via WhoScored.
The sizeable investment in Sinisterra suggests that he was brought in to ease the void left behind by the Brazilian and it’s easy to see why as he delivered a whopping 23 goals and 14 assists across 49 appearances, as per Transfermarkt.
As he’s unavailable, Marsch may have to turn to the rarely-seen Crysencio Summerville, who was surprisingly handed the no.10 shirt, or he may well have to tinker his formation – that’s the last thing you want to do on the opening day.
The American will want to start the season with a bang by sealing three points against the Old Gold but Sinisterra’s absence creates a headache and as Whelan claims, it’s a big blow to the club right now.