Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa has confirmed Patrick Bamford has suffered a fresh injury setback and will miss Saturday’s game with Newcastle – and also refused to answer questions on their interest in Brenden Aaronson.
The Whites go into Saturday’s crucial clash with the Magpies in far better shape, having recorded back-to-back victories for the first time this season. Indeed, a win on Saturday at Elland Road can lift Leeds up to mid-table – and far clear of the relegation worries some predicted.
Leeds’ turn of form is all the more remakable given their staggering injury list. Indeed, they went into last Sunday’s win at West Ham without eight first-team regulars – and then lost two more after just 20 minutes in Adam Forshaw and Junior Firpo.
Now Bielsa, speaking in his press conference, has confirmed Forshaw and Firpo and Firpo will miss out this weekend.
And in worse news for Leeds, he also has revealed a new setback for star striker Bamford.
“Adam Forshaw and Junior Firpo will miss out against Newcastle with hamstring injuries,” Bielsa stated. “Patrick Bamford is also not being considered after suffering a new injury at the bottom of his foot.”
News of Bamford’s latest setback will come as an enormous blow.
Last season’s top scorer has been seen once – a goalscoring cameo against Brentford – since September 17.
Bielsa confirms Leeds returnees
Asked if he had ever encountered such a situation, Bielsa was at least able to confirm two returnees.
“I’ve not seen so many players injuries. It’s not so much how many injuries, but that players who are injured are those who play in similar positions.
“We have always managed to find solutions. It’s likely for the game on Saturday though we can count on Tyler Roberts, Joe Gelhardt and Rodrigo.
“Progressively, we have been resolving the issues that present themselves.
“Therefore, on Saturday, it’s just Bamford and Sam Greenwood who are absent in attack.
“It’s the same in defence, with Pascal [Struijk] covering for [Liam] Cooper.”
And on their ongoing injury issues, he continued: “The difficulties can be interpreted as obstacles, but sometimes the situation fortifies the strength of the group.
“Up until now, this season, we have been constantly challenged. We have tried to improve the quality of our performances in this adversity.”
Bielsa dodges Brenden Aaronson questions
Leeds, meanwhile, remain quiet on the transfer front, though do have interest in Salzburg star Aaronson.
Leeds ready to try again for Brenden Aaronson
Bielsa's side saw opening bid worth £15m rejected by Salzburg
The 21-year-old has been earmarked for a January switch to Elland Road. The American international plays for Austrian powerhouse RB Salzburg who have become synonymous with developing superb young talent in recent years.
Leeds have reportedly already seen a £15m for the all-action midfielder rejected. However, they are undeterred and plans are afoot to raise their bid.
Indeed, as per the Daily Mail, Leeds director of football Victor Orta remains in talks with Salzburg over a potential deal.
The move would be welcome at Leeds given their midfield injury issues.
However, when questioned about Leeds’ plans to sign the player, Bielsa took evasive action.
“I prefer to speak about a player when he is not a hypothetical possibility, but when he is our player,” the Leeds boss countered.