QPR v Leeds United: Bielsa names Whites starting line-up ahead of R's clash

Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa.
Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa.
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Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa has named his starting line-up for the trip to Queens Park Rangers in the FA Cup this weekend.

The Argentine took the unprecedented step of revealing his team for Sunday afternoon's showdown with Steve McClaren's side at Loftus Road during his pre-match press conference on Friday.

Bielsa also admitted that there was a new injury concern for the Whites with left-back Barry Douglas picking up a muscular injury that will see him sidelined for the foreseeable future but played down the severity of the issue.

"I’m going to tell you my idea for this game," Bielsa stated openly.

"Peacock-Farrell will start. Shackleton will play as right-back. He’s an important player. Halme will play because Jansson will train normally from Monday.

"Ayling will play too because he needs to play, because Phillips is suspended. Cooper will play with the Under-23s on Monday. Davis will play too. Because Douglas is injured and it’s a player who is going to be missing for a while. It’s a muscular injury. Not that serious because he could finish the game against Nottingham. He didn’t come out of the game because he was injured.

"Adam Forshaw will play as No 4, Baker as an 8. Klich has played 36 games, he played all the games we have had and all the international games. I don’t think there is someone in the Championship who has played more than him. I think for him to rest is an obligation.

"For Pablo it’s also an obligation to rest. Tyler Roberts will play. And for the three offensive players, Harrison will play as No 9, Clarke on the right and Alioski on the left.

"As Patrick Bamford is not present I’m interested in seeing Harrison as a No 9. In the time he played in this position he scored a goal. The fact that he scored a goal doesn’t mean anything but it’s a possibility we would like to develop.

"It’s also convenient for Kemar Roofe not to play this game. This is the scenario. I have many hopes for this starting XI. We’ve been working with these players, Halme, Shackleton and Davis for many weeks and it’s a good moment for them to start this game."

Bielsa when asked about his reasons for naming his starting line-up nearly 48 hours ahead of kick-off, replied: "I wanted to give it today because the general opinion of my decisions is important to me.

"I wanted to explain case by case I did not disrespect the competition because the destinataries of the competitions are the fans and they have a link with the shirt and we can’t betray them."