Marcelo Bielsa delivers triple injury boost as Leeds take on West Ham, again


Marcelo Bielsa has told Leeds Live that Patrick Bamford, Rodrigo and Pascal Struijk could all return on Sunday to take on West Ham. But there are still seven players that will miss the trip to the London Stadium.

It is a huge boost for Leeds and the club’s supporters, who watched a Leeds side lose 2-0 to the Hammers in the FA Cup last weekend. It was a side that included youngsters Lew Bate, Leo Hjelde and Sam Greenwood.

But the trio were not included by choice, but because of injuries. Bamford, Rodrigo and Struijk were all missing from the match – while Junior Firpo and Greenwood picked up injuries during. Firpo is ready to return.

Now, Bielsa has confirmed Bamford, Rodrigo and Struijk will be fit to play this weekend. But Liam Cooper, Kalvin Phillips, Charlie Cresswell, Jamie Shackleton, Tyler Roberts and Joe Gelhardt all remain on the sidelines.

Not is it just those six that Leeds will be missing – but also Spain star Diego Llorente. He will serve a one-match ban, after picking up a fifth yellow. Bielsa said: “Pascal, Rodrigo and Bamford are options to return.”

The SPFL give Ange what he wants as Jota returns to training | Scott McDonald on 67 Hail Hail



The SPFL give Ange what he wants as Jota returns to training | Scott McDonald on 67 Hail Hail





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How could Leeds line-up – as Bielsa gives trio boost for West Ham trip?

The likelihood is that Struijk will come straight into the starting line-up – to replace Llorente. Cooper remains sidelined – and Luke Ayling lacks cover preventing him from moving into the middle.

His cover, in Shackleton, is injured, while Cody Drameh has moved to Cardiff. So, Struijk could partner Koch. Rodrigo is also likely to come in, with Mateusz Klich or Stuart Dallas perhaps partnering Adam Forshaw.

But Rodrigo might have to wait to make his return from the bench. One would expect Bamford to get the nod but after so long on the sidelines, Bielsa might be hesitant. It could see Rodrigo get the nod up front.

Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images

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