Leeds United boss Jesse Marsch will be without two experienced squad members for their FA Cup clash with Cardiff City this afternoon, according to Phil Hay…
What’s the latest?
The Athletic’s ever-reliable reporter claimed that the Whites would be without the “usual suspects” when they make the trip to Wales, where they will begin their latest cup campaign in the third round.
“It was quite telling, I thought, that Jesse Marsch said on Friday that Leeds (or Angus Kinnear) had told him that they want a cup run. That’s clearly removed the scope for Marsch to weaken his line-up drastically this afternoon.
“The usual suspects are likely to be missing again – [Patrick] Bamford, [Adam] Forshaw etc – but Cardiff are not having a great season and Leeds should be confident of making this tie theirs.”
Will Leeds make the 4th round for the first time in SIX years?
A big blow to Marsch
Given the recent comments from Kinnear to Marsch, it will come as a frustrating blow and bad news that he will not be able to call upon two of the club’s most experienced stars – and more – in a competition that has been a cause for concern in recent times.
Indeed, the Yorkshire giants have a diabolical record in the FA Cup, having been knocked out at this very stage in each of their last five attempts and that includes embarrassing defeats to lower league opposition like Newport County and Crawley Town, both of whom are in League Two right now.
Patrick Bamford has endured a rough time with injuries since the start of the 2021/22 campaign and recent surgery has ruled him out of action thus far in 2023. Leeds could certainly do with the man who bagged 17 goals in their first season back in the Premier League.
Meanwhile, Marsch’s current first-choice engine room are all signings from the summer transfer window, with Mateusz Klich departing for pastures new.
Marc Roca and Tyler Adams, with all respect, will not understand what this competition means to fans in England, at least in comparison to Forshaw, who has made an FA Cup appearance for four different teams.
The Whites have also struggled massively in the league, finding themselves languishing down in 14th place, just two points above the relegation zone and with only two wins in their last 15 in the top-flight.
Game-changers such as Luis Sinisterra are also likely to be missing in the Welsh capital, only further adding to Marsch’s frustrations, with the Elland Road hierarchy clearly looking for a run in this competition to offer supporters some respite from their league woes.
As such, the American has got to be frustrated to have the likes of Bamford, Forshaw and Sinisterra unavailable, not just because they are all valuable in their own right but because their involvement could have also handed valuable rest to those that have been playing in their place each week.
AND in other news, Marsch has unearthed “an absolute star” at Leeds after he gave West Ham “nightmares”…