Five things spotted on Leeds United's first day of pre-season as forgotten faces return

Leeds United welcomed back the bulk of their squad ahead of the 2022/23 Premier League campaign this week

By Joe Donnohue
Tuesday, 28th June 2022, 11:32 am

The day upon which players return to the training ground following their summer breaks is always a milestone in any football season’s calendar.

Some return sun-kissed, others sporting new hairstyles, but on the whole the mood tends to be a jovial one, focused on a fresh start.

This year’s pre-season calendar already looks very different; it will be the first time in four years that Marcelo Bielsa and his crew of coaches have not welcomed the players back to Thorp Arch.

Leeds United head coach Jesse Marsch takes training at Thorp Arch (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

Head coach Jesse Marsch greeted his squad at Leeds Beckett University before they underwent a variety of fitness tests on Monday morning.

New addition Marc Roca was present, even if Leeds’ two other summer signings Brenden Aaronson and Rasmus Kristensen were absent, given an additional week’s rest due to their involvement on international duty throughout June.

Leeds released a gallery of images from the first day at Leeds Beckett and Thorp Arch – here are five things the YEP observed on day one of pre-season.

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Dallas and Ayling

Both players were on crutches at Brentford a month ago, but nevertheless arrived on Monday.

The stalwart pairing are recovering from separate surgeries and remain sidelined from action, but were present for customary testing.

Dallas had been seen without crutches whilst celebrating Liam Cooper’s wedding in Ibiza over the summer, however the Northern Irishman was once again using them yesterday. It will not be until the turn of the year that Dallas is close to a return from his femoral fracture, meanwhile Ayling could miss anywhere between ‘2-4 months’, Marsch said towards the end of the season.

Patrick Bamford

Music to the ears of Leeds supporters will be news that striker Patrick Bamford has fought his way back to health and appears ready to tackle the new season head on.

He took part in the preliminary tests without any sign of the issues which robbed him of 29 league appearances missed through injury last season.

Ian Poveda

A forgotten face at Leeds, winger Ian Poveda made a return to official photographs at Thorp Arch following a difficult season on loan at Blackburn Rovers. The youngster injured himself early on during that campaign and was faced with a lengthy rehabilitation period back at Leeds, but would play no part for the Whites during 2021/22.

The ex-Man City attacker was spotted alongside members of the first-team group on day one of pre-season.

Loanee return

Left-back Leif Davis was another forgotten face spotted in Leeds’ pre-season gallery at Thorp Arch on Monday. He was pictured alongside teenage midfielder Archie Gray who looked to be involved with the first-team group.

Davis’ future remains in the balance, but Gray is expected to play an integral role for the Under-21 setup this season after an impressive debut season as a 15-year-old in Under-23 football last term.

Cody and Cry

Both Cody Drameh and Crysencio Summerville were keen to gain first-team experience out on loan last season, but only the former was granted a temporary exit. The duo returned to Thorp Arch on Monday keen to fight for senior roles at Leeds this year.