Bielsa refuses to make Bamford comparisons; Leeds trio depart

Date published: Monday 1st February 2021 4:57 - Samuel Bannister

Marcelo Bielsa TEAMtalk

Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa refused to compare Patrick Bamford to other strikers amid rumours of an England call-up.

Bamford took most of the plaudits after Sunday’s impressive win at Leicester, scoring his 11th of the season and having a hand in both of Leeds’ other goals in front of watching England manager Gareth Southgate.

The 27-year-old striker’s display has prompted further speculation over a possible England call-up, but Bielsa refuses to join the debate.

“This question has only one answer, which I have given previously,” he said. “I don’t want to be seen to be giving suggestions to Southgate, the manager of the England team, on his job.”

Nor would Bielsa be drawn on where Bamford ranks among his fellow top-flight strikers.

“I am not at this position to make comparisons. The one I know well is Patrick. My job is to know how good he is,” Bielsa added.

“So there will be other people who are more capable of making this comparison, people in charge of the incomings and the outgoings of the team, the press and the manager of the national team.”

Bamford – as well as Raphinha – is doubtful for Wednesday’s Premier League clash with Everton after finishing the game with injuries, Bielsa confirmed.

Leeds are waiting to learn the full extent of Rodrigo’s injury, which is expected to rule the forward out of this week’s home game against Everton.

The Spain international was forced off during Sunday’s win at Leicester after sustaining a muscle strain while stretching awkwardly for the ball.

“Rodrigo’s having a scan at the moment to evaluate his condition,” the Leeds boss said.

“He had an action where both feet were very wide apart and that extensive stretch potentially could have caused a muscular injury.

“The other two cases are less worrying. The problem that Rodrigo has to overcome to be available on Wednesday is bigger.

“The problems that Raphinha and Bamford have to overcome are more simple.”

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Raphinha appeared to have a thigh strain when he was withdrawn late in the game at Leicester, while Bamford finished with a dead leg.

Bielsa reported no other new injury concerns as his side bid for a third straight league win on Wednesday night.

Mateusz Klich replaced Rodrigo at the King Power Stadium and is likely to return to the starting line-up against Everton.

It would be a major blow for Leeds if Bamford and Raphinha are ruled out as well.

Trio depart Leeds

Bielsa said he was not expecting any new arrivals on transfer deadline day, but Leeds announced the departures of Jay-Roy Grot, Conor Shaughnessy and Rafa Mujica.

Dutch forward Grot has completed a permanent move to German second tier side Osnabruck and defender Shaughnessy’s contract has been terminated by mutual consent.

Spanish forward Mujica has joined Spanish Segunda Division side Las Palmas on loan until the end of season.

READ MORE: Veteran still seen as important as Leeds block midfielder’s Spanish exit

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