By David Woods

7th Apr, 2021 | 8:47pm

Liam Cooper: This is the first time Bielsa has had a full squad to pick from

If you want to talk about teams suffering from injury problems, then Leeds United take some beating. 

Talking on the BBC tonight, Liam Cooper has claimed that Marcelo Bielsa has a full squad to pick from for the first time since joining the club in June 2018.

Cooper was talking about the competition he now faces at centre-back, saying, “Diego [Llorente] has come in and done unbelievably. He’s quick and very decent on the ball.

“We all try and improve our ball game… he’s a Spanish international and they don’t just give caps out. I really enjoy playing alongside him.

“He’s played with Pascal [Struijk] as well, Pascal has been unbelievable this season.

“Now we’ve got four players going for the two positions, it’s only healthy. You know if you have a couple of bad games you’re out of the team.

“It’s the first time since the manager has been here that he’s had a full squad to pick from.”

Never-ending injuries

This is pretty unbelievable.

Bielsa has been at the club almost three years and during that time there have always been names on the injured list.

Adam Forshaw was the last name and he’s been declared fit by Marcelo Bielsa, although his return to the first-team could still be a way off, with the Under-23s likely to be his route back to start with.

But it’s been in defence where Leeds have had real problems this season. Cooper, Llorente and Robin Koch have all been injured this season and that’s seen Luke Ayling play in the centre of defence, and other players shuffled around.

Incredibly, when Koch came on for a late cameo against Sheffield United last time out, it was the first time all our four big summer signings have been on the pitch together.

Given that, the fact that we’re in mid-table and only seven points off both Liverpool and Tottenham should be very exciting to fans.

Given a full squad and new players in the summer, a top-half finish should be well within our grasp next season.

In other Leeds United news, ‘Not ashamed to say’ – Leeds first-team star makes confession about mystery absence