Leeds United have predicted a line-up against Watford with a change as Jesse Marsch can’t leave ‘quality’ on the bench

Leeds United line up to defend a free kick moments before James Ward Prowse equalizes for Southampton. Photo: Stu Forster.

United are hoping to go four games unbeaten for the first time this season when they face Watford at Vicarage Road on Saturday.

It’s a huge game at the foot of the Premier League as, with the end of the season in sight, both teams are desperate to get the points they need to stay in the top flight.

The Hornets are one game short of Leeds but trail the Whites by eight points, so they must win this weekend if they hope to catch Jesse Marsch’s men.

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The Frenchman showed no signs of trouble against the Saints after his nasty collision with Raul Jimenez, although he still seemed to understand Marsch’s instructions to slow play at times. Meslier is a banker to start against Watford .

Last time out United were held to a frustrating 1-1 draw by Southampton as James Ward-Prowse’s skill at free-kicks canceled out Jack Harrison’s lead.

Both Liam Cooper and Kalvin Phillips did well in their return to action, with the skipper unexpectedly completing the full ninety minutes while Phillips had a big impact on the game from the bench in the second half.

Whites boss Marsch was delighted to see the effect the pair’s return was having on his team.

“The point is certainly important in our season, but to have two great players like Liam and Kalvin back in the squad and closer to full fitness is huge for us right now,” Marsch said.

When fit, Ayling has started every game this season. The right-back is in good form and is sure to start against Watford.

“We’re going to need those guys in a big way. They bring a big presence to our team, so this was a big step forward for us.

“I think that he is [Phillips] fantastic. You can see his quality, you can see his composure, you can see the confidence he brings to the group.

“When I say we were pushing in the last 15-20 minutes, I think Kalvin played a very big role in that. He came on the pitch and really sorted things out for us.

After a dramatic night at Molineux where four players were injured, Marsch’s side escaped the Saints clash largely unscathed, but Whites fans were horrified to learn that young attacking ace Joe Gelhardt had crashed. injured when he appeared for the Under-23s on Monday night. .

Mr Irreducible. Dallas haven’t missed a Premier League game this season and, with Junior Firpo’s knee recovering, it doesn’t look like he’ll be doing so anytime soon.

Supporters had hoped to see the 19-year-old start against Southampton, but Marsch revealed a false positive covid test kept Gelhardt out of training so he wasn’t quite up to it.

The teenager appeared to be in the mood for the academy side but was pulled off with a suspected dead leg. With assessments ongoing this week, United fans await the new injury update to be released by Marsch at his pre-match press conference on Thursday.

This is how we expect Leeds United to line up against Roy Hodgson’s side on Saturday:

The skipper did well to spend the whole match against Southampton, even though it was not planned. Cooper looked confident and comfortable for his first time on the court since December.
Unless he has a major cause, Marsch will stick to an established defense. The Spaniard wasn’t perfect against the Saints but showed plenty of passion and no good reason to be dropped.
Marsch attributed Leeds’ late push against Southampton to the contribution of Phillips’ return. “You can see his quality, you can see his composure, you can see the confidence he brings to the group,” Los Blancos boss said. After 17 weeks out, Phillips made no mistake and more than proved his right to a starting spot.
That of Klich or Adam Forshaw must give way to Kalvin Phillips. Watford have the third-worst defensive record in the league (behind Leeds and Norwich) and Leeds must exploit that in this vital relegation clash. Marsch should be geared towards the more attacking Klich when selected.
The Brazilian still isn’t quite showing the dazzling form that Los Blancos fans know he is capable of but, in setting up Jack Harrison’s goal, Raphinha showed a desire and tenacity to kind that Marsch hopes will form the foundation of the Whites’ bid for survival.
Harrison has scored in each of Leeds’ last two Premier League games, but he hasn’t played at his best. The only player who could take him out of Marsch’s XI is Dan James, who is needed to lead the line, so Harrison keeps his place.
The 31-year-old has really found his feet under Marsch. Rodrigo was at the heart of things against Southampton and will hopefully be busy again at Watford.
The injury suffered by Joe Gelhardt on Monday pretty much solves Marsch’s offensive dilemma for him. The Whites boss has trusted young number nine Sam Greenwood but will more likely opt for experience out of his position at Vicarage Road.

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