By Mark Smith

6th Aug, 2022 | 9:10am

Phil Hay has predicted the starting XI of Leeds United for the Premier League showdown with Wolves at Elland Road on Saturday afternoon.

The Athletic journalist has backed the team that started against Cagliari last weekend to start once again with numerous injury and suspension blows to deal with.

That means Pascal Struijk will start at left-back and Patrick Bamford will lead the line with four new signings making their official debuts for the club.

Writing in The Athletic’s matchday Q&A on Saturday morning (06 August), Hay shared what he expects to see this afternoon when the teams are published.

“For Jesse Marsch, there are quite a few absentees,” he wrote.

“Liam Cooper, Luis Sinisterra, Junior Firpo, Adam Forshaw and Luke Ayling are all out through injury (though back soon) and Dan James is suspended.

“As a guess at a line-up, probably: Meslier; Kristensen, Koch, Llorente, Struijk; Roca, Adams; Aaronson, Rodrigo, Harrison, Bamford.”

Solid.

Of course, we would have loved to have had the likes of Dan James and Luis Sinisterra available to add more firepower in the final third but we have enough.

A new left-back would also have been perfect ahead of this one, but Struijk should be enough to fill in for one game, although he could get caught out.

Wolves are without Raul Jiminez and Adama Traore so their two main danger options are out so that is one less headache to deal with at Elland Road.

Neto will be the man to watch with Morgan Gibbs-White and Daniel Podence expected to also start, something our back four should hopefully relish.

Having a fully fit Bamford leading the line will transform the side too, and with Joe Gelhardt also ready to come on, we should look back to our most dangerous selves in this one.

Jesse Marsch will want a positive start, let’s hope this side can deliver that.

In other Leeds United news, the Whites now want to sign this striker with a rival set to kickstart a major £30million+ transfer battle