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Leeds United: Kevin Phillips discusses defensive issue ahead of Wolves tie

Leeds United: Kevin Phillips discusses defensive issue ahead of Wolves tie - Leeds United News

Former England striker Kevin Phillips has discussed the defensive issues Marcelo Bielsa faces ahead of Leeds United‘s tie with Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday evening.

Leeds have started the season in excellent style, bouncing back after a defeat to Liverpool on the opening day of the season with a three-game unbeaten run.

Set to face Wolves on Monday evening in the first game back since the international break came to an end, the Yorkshire side find themselves with a couple of injury problems, including issues with both Liam Cooper and Diego Llorente.

Llorente, who arrived from Real Sociedad this summer, is a certainty to miss Monday’s game after picking up an injury with the Spanish national team, whilst Cooper faces a late fitness test on the morning of the game.

What has Phillips said about the injury problems Bielsa has?

Asked by website Football Insider whether he expects Pascal Struijk and Robin Koch to be the starting central defenders against Wolves, Phillips said: “Yes, I would think so.

“Again on international duty losing your players, unfortunately.

“It’s crazy that they’re playing three international matches in the space of a week, 10 days.

“It’s crazy especially at this stage of the season with them not having such a long break in the summer, coming straight off the back of last season.

“It was inevitable that players were going to get injured so with the likes of Leeds coming up from the Championship you don’t want to be losing players who are crucial to you.

“The players that conceded the goals against Liverpool looks like they might have to go again. That’s quite concerning against a Wolves team with the firepower that we know they’ve got.

“I would certainly be concerned if I was Bielsa.”

Koch and Struijk expected to partner each other

Koch has featured already this term for Leeds and he will be the lead centre back along side Struijk, by the looks of things.

The latter looks set to make just his second appearance of the season after being promoted from the under-23 side this summer.

The absence of Llorente may not be the big one for Leeds fans or Bielsa with the Spaniard yet to embed himself into the first team at Elland Road but Cooper has been a solid performer, sealing an impressive 7.17 out of 10 rating for his performances this term, and that could be the biggest issue for the Argentine coach.

Do you think Leeds will struggle without Liam Cooper in defence? Let us know in the comments section below…

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Article title: Leeds United: Kevin Phillips discusses defensive issue ahead of Wolves tie

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