Leeds United fans must have been extremely worried when they heard that Pablo Hernandez had picked up a knock during their defeat at Birmingham City.
The Spanish midfielder has been at the heart of Marcelo Bielsa’s revolution at Elland Road with his 12 goals and 11 assists helping to propel the club into a battle for automatic promotion this season.
According to the Yorkshire Evening Post, Hernandez left St Andrews on Saturday wearing a medical boot yet has still travelled with the squad ahead of their game with Preston North End later tonight. Although it is not certain whether he is fit enough to start, the Whites must not risk the 33-year-old as if they do, it could end up being a disastrous decision if he picks up another injury.
Hernandez is arguably Leeds’ best attacking outlet and could make all the difference between his side finishing in the top-two ahead of Sheffield United or having to settle for the lottery of the play-offs, a competition that they have not had a good relationship with in recent times. In 2006, the club lost 3-0 in the Championship final to Watford and following a relegation to the third tier they were unsuccessful in both 2008 and 2009.
With six games to go between now and May, the Whites may benefit from giving Hernandez a rest from action at Preston as not only will it freshen up the squad for their trip to Deepdale but it will also give the midfielder a better chance of recovering to full fitness for Saturday’s clash with Sheffield Wednesday.
Bielsa could replace the former Valencia star with Keemar Roofe or Stuart Dallas whilst Jack Clarke may also be an option although he is unlikely to start having featured for the club’s under-23 side last night at Elland Road.
What do you think Leeds fans? Should Bielsa risk Hernandez at Preston tonight? Or is it too big of a risk to take at this stage of the season? Let us know below.