Marcelo Bielsa could turn to some of his under-23 stars to allay a mounting injury crisis as Leeds prepare to travel to Fulham in the Carabao Cup.
Injuries to Luke Ayling and Raphinha added to the Elland Road issues in the wake of Friday night’s draw at Newcastle while the club’s young stars are itching to make an impression.
Crysencio Summerville made his Premier League debut as a second-half substitute against the Magpies. And he could be given a greater chance to make his mark at Craven Cottage on Tuesday.
Reflecting on Summerville’s display, Bielsa said: “He didn’t have too many minutes and few chances to unbalance them but he did show personality.
“He asked for the ball, he didn’t lose it. He contributed to the possession but clearly he wasn’t able to unbalance.”
While Bielsa’s men are still waiting for their first league win of the season, the club’s under-23 stars swept aside Liverpool 4-0 on Sunday.
The game saw a welcome return for Adam Forshaw, who is also in the frame to make a rare first-team appearance against Marco Silva’s side.
Injuries continue to restrict Bielsa’s options. Robin Koch, Diego Llorente and Jack Harrison are all sidelined, adding to the potential absences of Ayling and Raphinha.
Bielsa admits it’s getting ‘complicated’
Ayling covered at centre-back on Friday, but he was forced off with a knock late on.
“We have four centre-backs and the option of Ayling is number five,” Bielsa said afterwards. “If we have to resolve the absence of four of them, it’s going to be complicated. ”
Harrison was absent from the teamsheet at St James’ Park and quickly confirmed that he had tested positive for Covid-19.
“So frustrated to be missing the game due to COVID. But I’ll be supporting the boys from home and be back real soon.” he wrote on Instagram.
“Thanks for all the well wishes, I’m feeling fine good luck lads!”