By Mark Smith

3rd Sep, 2022 | 9:30am

Phil Hay: Gnonto not involved for Leeds United v Brentford, Cooper more likely than Bamford to start

Phil Hay has shared that Liam Cooper is the player most ready to come into the Leeds United starting XI against Brentford from the previously injured options for Jesse Marsch.

The Athletic journalist shared that Patrick Bamford would be a handy inclusion in the side with Rodrigo out injured and Wilfried Gnonto not in the squad.

Leeds have given the Italian international time to get himself together after only jetting into England less than 24 hours previously from Switzerland.

Writing in his pre-match Q&A for The Athletic, Hay shared what he expects from the squad later on today as the Whites take to the capital once again.

“Leeds got an attacking signing in the end; not Cody Gakpo, not Bamba Dieng but Wilfried Gnonto, the 18-year-old Italy international from FC Zurich,” he wrote.

“He only flew into England yesterday so he won’t be involved in the squad at Brentford and it remains to be seen how quickly Jesse Marsch pushes him into first-team contention.

“It would be handy if Patrick Bamford could start but Marsch’s comments about him on Thursday were a little cautious. Liam Cooper, he said, was the player most ready to come into the XI.”

Changes?

After the same team has basically started the past three or four games for Leeds, it could be time for a refresh.

Cooper coming back in is the right time, Diego Llorente has been shaky in recent weeks and it would be very harsh to take out Robin Koch over him – something Marsch has described as his best performer so far.

Bamford is the huge one though.

With Rodrigo out and Gnonto not available yet, having the England international leading the line could make all of the difference with what he brings to the table.

You saw against Everton the impact he had when he can hold the ball up and get the likes of Jack Harrison, Luis Sinisterra and Brenden Aaronson running around him.

Changes are certainly expected at Brentford, but it is just who will drop out as we finally welcome back everyone but Stuart Dallas from the treatment table.

As well as Bamford and Cooper, Junior Firpo and Luke Ayling are also available, so there are decisions to be made.

All eyes are on 2pm already.

In other Leeds United news, the Whites have said see you again to one attacker after being left baffled by a deadline day agreement this week