By MOT Leeds News speaking to Paul Robinson

15th Dec, 2022 | 7:10pm

We’re delighted to welcome former England goalkeeper Paul Robinson as our exclusive columnist as each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Leeds United…

Paul Robinson wants Jesse Marsch to name as strong a team as possible when Leeds United play Real Sociedad in a mid-season friendly on Friday.

The Whites will play against Diego Llorente’s former side at Elland Road on 16 December in what will be their penultimate warm-up game before the Premier League season restarts after Christmas.

Leeds played and beat Elche in Spain last week with Marsch using a good mix of youngsters, fringe players and regular starters.

And going into the Sociedad fixture, Robinson wants to see the American go as strong as possible in order to get the team back on track going into their league clash against Manchester City on 28 December.

“It’s the second to last friendly before the Premier League season restarts so it’s important for the team to start taking shape,” Robinson told MOT Leeds News.

“Yes, they’ve only had four weeks off but it’s an unusual length of time for players to have off.

The cohesion needs to be back in place and they can’t afford to be sucked into a relegation battle so, in all honesty, I’d like Jesse Marsch to name a team that he wants to start in the first game back.

I know they had players out against Elche and it was a difficult game for them away in Spain. It wasn’t a typical friendly and the Real Sociedad game will be the same.

Let’s hope it puts them in good stead going into the restart of the season.”

Leeds had to come from behind to beat Elche last week with Joe Gelhardt and Mateusz Klich both scoring in the second half.

Joel Robles, Leo Hjelde, Sonny Perkins, Cody Drameh, Darko Gyabi, Wilfried Gnonto, Mateo Joseph and Klich were among the youngsters and fringe players who earned a run-out in the Festa D’Elx Trophy match.

In other Leeds United news, talks are underway over this player quitting Elland Road for a high-paid contract.