Leeds United's predicted line up v Cardiff City with changes, double debut and big striker call

Leeds United’s quest for promotion finally begins with Sunday’s hosting of Cardiff City – and this is how we think the Whites will line up.

Leeds signed off from their pre-season friendlies with two games in the space of four days at the back end of last week as a 2-0 victory against Nottingham Forest at Burton Albion was followed by Sunday’s 1-0 triumph over Hearts at Tynecastle.

New Whites boss Daniel Farke made five changes to the team that lined up against Forest at Hearts but revealed afterwards that it would be wrong to view Sunday’s team as his idea of the starting XI to face Cardiff. In any case, Leeds were dealt a double injury blow at Tynecastle in losing both of their strikers. Georginio Rutter was forced off with a core muscle injury and his replacement Patrick Bamford later injured his hamstring.

Farke was already without six other players through injuries in Tyler Adams, Jack Harrison, Junior Firpo, Cody Drameh, Sam Greenwood and Stuart Dallas. Speaking at Friday’s pre-match press conference, Farke then revealed that 19-year-old striker Mateo Joseph who had replaced Bamford at Hearts was also now injured having rolled his ankle in training.

It means the Whites boss could have eight men missing for the season opener against the Bluebirds and this is the XI that we think will take to the field for Sunday’s 2.30pm kick-off at Elland Road.