By Mark Smith

15th Sep, 2021 | 10:10am

Predicted Leeds starting XI v Newcastle

Leeds United travel to Newcastle on Friday evening looking for their first Premier League win of the season.

Both clubs will be desperate for three points to kickstart their seasons, especially after heavy defeats over the weekend.

Marcelo Bielsa has numerous problems to contend with, and a potential defensive crisis with only Liam Cooper available centrally as it stands.

Illan Meslier will start in goal, and look for a better outcome and potentially his first clean sheet of the season.

The back four will face a big reshuffle, with Luke Ayling playing centrally and Stuart Dallas forced to drop in at right-back.

Diego Llorente and Pascal Struijk will miss out, so Cooper will complete the back four alongside Junior Firpo.

Kalvin Phillips will continue in midfield, and that will be the case all season barring any injuries or suspensions.

Dallas dropping into defence, Mateusz Klich will come into that central role and link the attack and midfield at St James’ Park.

Rodrigo will be dropped, there is simply no chance he stays in the side after yet another shocker against Liverpool.

That means Raphinha will play centrally against Newcastle and look to pick holes for Jack Harrison and Dan James, who will earn his first start.

As expected, Patrick Bamford will finish off the starting XI as we go looking for our first three points of the campaign.

Here is how we expect the Whites to line up…

In other Leeds United news, Gabby Agbonlahor fails Whites-Villa task on talkSPORT, throws cue card at end