Bielsa responds to emergency loan talk as Leeds crisis deepens

Date published: Thursday 22nd November 2018 12:32

Leeds will ask the EFL for special dispensation to sign an emergency goalkeeper after both their senior options suffered injuries and were ruled out against Bristol City on Saturday.

The Whites last week lost on-loan Chelsea star Jamal Blackman to a broken leg, ensuring he would not play again for Leeds and has since been sent back to Stamford Bridge.

And now boss Marcelo Bielsa has revealed the news all fans were dreading with No 1 Bailey Peacock-Farrell also having sustained a knee injury and now rated extremely doubtful for Saturday’s clash against Bristol City.

Leeds are now likely to ask the Football League for permission to sign a short-term deputy, with Bielsa saying: “I can’t tell you about the possibility of bringing someone in.”

As it stands, the Whites may also be forced to field the untested Will Huffer or Kamil Miazek against the Robins on Saturday as they seek to get their promotion push back on track.

Leeds are also without long-term injury victims Luke Ayling and Patrick Bamford, while in a further blow to Bielsa, the club look also set to be without centre-half Pontus Jansson on Saturday.

“Until yesterday we thought he would be available but now the game is getting closer I don’t have the same optimism,” Bielsa added. “He didn’t train with the group.”

Leeds could start versatile midfielder Kalvin Phillips in defence, with Bielsa adding: “Phillips can play as a centre-back. Aapo Halme is another opportunity. These are the two opportunities.”

 

Bielsa on Blackman injury

 

Bielsa, meanwhile, has revealed Blackman would have started ahead of Peacock-Farrell had he not so cruelly broken his leg in an U23s game last week.

“I’m very sad for him because of what happened. He’s a great person, he’s a great goalkeeper, he did a huge effort to do what we wanted him to do,” he added.

“He lost 12 kilos. This indicates his level of dedication as a professional. He was a great team-mate for the other players and for us as a staff. When he won the opportunity to start again, he got injured. I’m especially sad for him. The destiny is unfair with him.”

 

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