Predicted Leeds side to face Birmingham: Alioski starts despite Tuesday showing

Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa during the Sky Bet Championship match between Millwall and Leeds United at The Den on September 15, 2018 in London, England.

Leeds face Garry Monk's Birmingham on Saturday afternoon at Elland Road.

Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa during the Sky Bet Championship match between Millwall and Leeds United at The Den on September 15, 2018 in London, England.

Marcelo Bielsa is unlikely to risk his crocked Leeds United stars against Garry Monk's Birmingham City as the table toppers await the return of a handful of first-team players from the treatment room.

Patrick Bamford remains a long-term absentee after suffering a posterior cruciate ligament injury to his knee. He will be on the sidelines until the new year, in what is a disappointing blow after his big-money move from Middlesbrough.

In-form attacker Kemar Roofe also remains out, as does Jamie Shackleton, Izzy Brown, Gaetano Berardi and mercurial playmaker Pablo Hernandez. Despite this, Leeds remain unbeaten and at the top of the Championship.

 

Indeed, Bielsa has got Leeds playing a brand of football that is difficult to match in England's second tier, as he looks to deliver promotion back to the Premier League for the first time since the club was relegated in 2004.

Following an excellent 3-0 win over Preston at Elland Road on Tuesday night, Leeds are expected to name an unchanged side despite a couple of questionable performances against Alex Neil's side.

Tyler Roberts scored his first Leeds goals while Samu Saiz, Kalvin Phillips, Liam Cooper, Pontus Jansson and Jack Harrison all shone. But Gjanni Alioski's inconsistency was once again a feature, while Mateusz Klich was wasteful.

Ezgjan Alioski of Leeds United rounds goalkeeper Declan Rudd of Preston North End during the Sky Bet Championship match between Leeds United and Preston North End at Elland Road on...

Alioski, 26, was hardly involved compared to other winger Harrison against Preston, while Klich should have scored a brace after being put through on goal twice. Stuart Dallas and Lewis Baker would be obvious replacements.

But here, we think Bielsa will name an unchanged line-up unless any of his injured stars make a miraculous comeback.

Leeds Birmingham

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