Key Leeds United figure makes injury return at Hull City with two Whites changes
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Whites captain Liam Cooper has been sidelined since rupturing his plantar fascia in the opening weekend 2-2 draw at home to Cardiff City but makes the Leeds bench for this evening’s contest against the Tigers (kick-off 7.45pm).
Cooper returned to training last week ahead of Sunday’s clash at Millwall but did not make the matchday squad for the weekend contest against the Lions. The two Leeds changes this evening see Dan James and Jamie Shackleton come into the side as Crysencio Summerville and Sam Byram drop to the bench.
In addition to Cooper, Whites boss Daniel Farke still had five players out for Sunday’s clash at The Den in Patrick Bamford, Junior Firpo, longer-term absentee Stuart Dallas and summer signing Djed Spence.
Tottenham loanee Spence was rated a major doubt for the clash after suffering a knock to his knee in training. The full back had earlier missed some training sessions due to private reasons. Leeds then revealed on Monday that Spence had damaged his lateral collateral ligament and was facing up to eight weeks out, despite the issue not expected to require surgery.
Farke provided a fresh team news update at Tuesday afternoon’s pre-Hull press conference, at which he revealed that Bamford was back training with the group but too soon to be involved against the Tigers. Farke also revealed that Firpo was still training individually as he continues on the comeback trail from a hip issue.
The Whites boss was also waiting on the condition of midfielder Ethan Ampadu who took a whack in Sunday’s 3-0 win at Millwall but Ampadu starts and continues the axis alongside 17-year-old Archie Gray in centre midfield.
Cooper’s reappearance on the Whites bench means no place in the matchday squad for Charlie Cresswell who makes way for the skipper’s return. Glen Kamara, Ilia Gruev, Jaidon Anthony, Ian Poveda and Joe Gelhardt are also all on the bench in addition to back up keeper Karl Darlow.
Tigers boss Liam Rosenior has made two changes to his Hull side for whom keeper Ryan Allsop makes his debut between the sticks in replacing Matt Ingram who drops to the bench.
Cyrus Christie also replaces Ruben Vinagre for a team captained by ex Whites man Lewie Coyle. Turkish international Ozan Tufan also returns from injury to take his place on the bench.
Hull City: Allsop; Christie, Jones, Greaves, Coyle; Seri, Slater; Delap, Twine, Philogene; Connolly. Subs: Ingram, Vinagre, McLoughlin, Tufan, Allahyar, Traoré, Morton, Lokilo, Smith.
Leeds United: Meslier; Ayling, Rodon, Struijk, Shackleton; Ampadu, Gray; James, Gnonto; Piroe, Rutter. Subs: Darlow, Byram, Cooper, Kamara, Gruev, Poveda, Summerville, Anthony, Gelhardt.
Referee: S Martin.