Leeds United team news - Marcelo Bielsa reveals fitness latest for Jamie Shackleton, Robin Koch and Pascal Struijk for Chelsea game

MARCELO BIELSA says he has Jamie Shackleton, Robin Koch and Gaetano Berardi available for Leeds United’s game against Chelsea.

Thursday, 11th March 2021, 2:46 pm
BACK IN THE GAME: Robin Koch has been on the road to recovery following knee surgery. Picture: Daniel Leal-Olivas/Getty Images)

Shackleton has been out with a minor groin problem, while both Koch and Berardi are coming back from respective knee surgeries.

Koch required an operation after the damage sustained in Leeds’ Premier League opener against Liverpool worsened after a collision early on at Stamford Bridge in December.

Bielsa thinks it likely that Koch will feature for the Under 23s against Newcastle United on Monday, which would make his involvement against the Blues unlikely and suggest that Liam Cooper and Diego Llorente will continue their central defensive partnership.

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In further good news for the Whites, both Kalvin Phillips and Rodrigo came through their returns from injury against West Ham unscathed.

But Pascal Struijk and Pablo Hernandez remain out for the Chelsea clash at Elland Road.

“Shackleton is available, Koch also, Berardi also,” said Bielsa. “Rodrigo and Phillips are both good. Neither of Hernandez and Struijk will be able to play.”

Struijk’s issue is one he could play with, but Bielsa’s other centre-half options and the return of Phillips mean the 21-year-old can be given time to recover.

INJURY BLOW: Pascal Struijk won't be available to face Chelsea this weekend. Picture: Tim Goode-Pool/Getty Images

“The injury Pascal has is not a serious injury because various of our players including himself have played with this injury,” he said. “Whilst he’s not needed urgently, I prefer he has more time to recover.”

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