Marcelo Bielsa reveals reason behind Izzy Brown absence for Leeds United
Leeds United’s regular season is seven games from a conclusion and Izzy Brown’s first-team statistics for the club show one touch of the ball, one yellow card and nine minutes on the pitch.
It is almost inconceivable at this late stage, and on the basis of Marcelo Bielsa’s rigid commitment to players who have already served him well, that Brown will make a meaningful impact in the time he has left but Bielsa maintained today that the midfielder is an “option” who could yet figure in the Championship’s denouement.
Brown has played once under Bielsa, as a substitute in a 2-1 defeat to Queens Park Rangers on February, and failed to make the bench for last weekend’s victory over Millwall at Elland Road.
Bielsa said the Chelsea loanee had been struggling with a minor injury in the build-up to Millwall’s visit and was back in contention for Saturday's game away at Birmingham City.
“Last week Izzy Brown has a small injury,” Bielsa said. “Now he’s recovered from this injury and he’s one of the options I have.”
Leeds signed Brown on a season-long deal from Chelsea in August, at a time when the 21-year-old was months away from completing his recovery from an ACL injury suffered on loan at Brighton last season.
United hoped that a play who figured prominently in Huddersfield Town’s promotion season of 2016-17 would become a key part of Bielsa’s plans in the second half of this term.
Brown, however, has watched first-team fixtures pass him by and seen most of his game time in development-squad matches, helping the Under-23s to win their league title.