Unless Laurens De Bock gets called into the first-team squad tomorrow it looks very likely that a youngster will get the call. Adam Forshaw and Stuart Dallas are injured and that leaves the squad from last week plus one space on the bench, and plenty of player will hope to get the nod.
There are plenty of options and some have impressed Bielsa in pre-season. The issue is that Stuart Dallas covered about four different positions by being on the bench, and now Bielsa has a dilemma. He needs another central midfielder realistically, but Dallas covered the two full-back positions in one, and that leads me to my first player.
Jamie Shackleton – Shackleton was used in various roles in pre-season and for me he’s the obvious choice tomorrow. Marcelo Bielsa has praised him this week and the player has played at right-back, on the wing and even in central midfield for the last few minutes against Las Palmas. Is he the closest thing to Dallas that Bielsa has? A very talented and quick player.
Conor Shaughnessy – Although he is naturally a central midfielder he seems much more natural at the back. Good on the ball but can get flustered in the middle of the pitch. Bielsa has also praised him this week. The most senior of the younger players, no doubting he has the potential to be moulded.
Jack Clarke – For me the most naturally talented player in the under 23’s and on the fringes of the second team. Ball sticks to his feet and he works extremely hard. Do Leeds need another attacking player on the bench? Who knows, but the talent is there.
Tom Pearce – A player who was expected to burst back into the first-team this season but hasn’t been part of Bielsa’s stronger sides. Dallas played left-back in the summer and the arrival of Barry Douglas means chances will be limited. Certainly an option on the bench for a couple of roles down the left.
Ryan Edmondson – I can’t see him making the bench simply because he is behind Patrick Bamford and Kemar Roofe. One of them gets injured and he’s very much in the mix. That’s how tight the squad is at the moment. A huge talent.