The Lowdown: Forshaw out, Phillips back
It has been a case of one in one out at Thorp Arch in recent weeks, with Phillips making a first start since December against Crystal Palace on Monday.
However, one man who didn’t feature at Selhurst Park was Forshaw, who will now miss the rest of the season after fracturing a knee cap in training.
That leaves Jesse Marsch with a shortage of central midfielders for the run-in, with Mateusz Klich and Robin Koch playing 45 minutes each alongside Phillips earlier in the week.
The Latest: Whelan’s comments
Whelan, talking to FI, labelled Forshaw’s injury at Thorp Arch as ‘unfortunate’ and ‘disappointing’.
He then added that Phillips is going to ‘have to step up and perform’ for the final five games, labelling his return from the off as a ‘massive plus’.
Will Marsch keep Leeds up?
Yes, I still have faith!
No, we are finished!
“Adam Forshaw was so unfortunate to get that training injury.
“He’s been one of the best players, for me, this season – and you can see what a difference he’s made since coming back in.
“It’s disappointing because we could have done with both Phillips and Forshaw. But now Kalvin is going to really have to step up and perform for these last games of the season.
“Everyone knows what is required of them, and Kalvin being back is a massive plus no matter how you look at it.”
The Verdict: Not ideal
Phillips and Forshaw featured together briefly against Southampton at Elland Road, and the duo may well have been Marsch’s first-choice pairing, making the latter’s setback a frustrating one.
That will have to wait until next season, and hopefully, Marsch will be able to find a solution in midfield with Phillips and one other between now and the end of the season.
Koch was Leeds’ worst-rated performer on Monday, as per SofaScore, so perhaps Marsch will go with Klich once again from the off when the Whites take on Manchester City on Saturday.
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