Good Morning. It's Wednesday 17th March, and here are the latest headlines from Elland Road...
Speculation grows due to Cooper's 'illness'
Scotland Manager Steve Clarke has ruled Leeds skipper out of the World Cup qualifiers at the end of the month, against Austria, Israel and the Faroe Islands citing 'he's not available'.
He's not available for the games. I spoke to Liam. He could maybe have been available for the third game but it's not going to happen. We had a good chat about it and decided to go with the ones I've picked.
The 29 year old missed Saturday lunchtime's clash against Chelsea at Elland Road due to 'illness', with Bielsa only stating 'he's sick'. Whilst it's common this time of year to contract colds, flu and other similar ailments, the effects should only keep a professional athletic in his prime out of action for perhaps a week, 10 days. With Clarke ruling the former Hull City defender out when their games are almost a fortnight away indicates there is more to this than meets the eye.
Speculation on social media is rife that Cooper has contracted the Corona Virus, thus taking the proper isolation procedures. We know from the past that Bielsa will keep tight lipped to protect his players from media speculation.
Major injury blows ahead of West London clash
Leeds will travel down to Craven Cottage on Friday evening without the services of Skipper Liam Cooper, and almost certainly Patrick Bamford. As we have heard, Cooper has been ruled out of action for the rest of the month with 'illness' whilst and their leading goal scorer has not fully recovered for his leg injury, sustained last weekend against Chelsea.
Will Bielsa bow to public pressure, and promote teenage sensation Joe Gelhardt to lead the line against the Cottagers, or rely on a combination of Rodrigo and Tyler Roberts? With Koch proving his fitness for the U23's against Newcastle on Monday, will Bielsa throw the German International in at the deep end to partner either Llorente or Struijk?
Who would you like to see start?