Leeds have been dealt another major injury blow with Adam Forshaw ruled out for the rest of the season after fracturing his knee-cap.
The 30-year-old midfielder will be sidelined for six weeks after sustaining the injury during training and will miss the remaining six games as Leeds bid to retain their Premier League status.
It is the latest in a long list of injuries to key Leeds players this season and is another huge setback for Forshaw, who battled back from a career-threatening hip problem last August after missing almost two seasons.
Head coach Jesse Marsch, whose side resume their relegation fight at Crystal Palace on Monday, said: “He was back training and took a knock in a collision on his knee-cap and unfortunately he fractured the knee-cap.
“It’s a six-week injury so that puts him out for the season. The main thing is that Adam is one of the guys in the team who gives more to the group and does everything he can to think about the team first.
“It’s obviously painful for us because he’s an important guy, but we’ll still have him around and he’ll still be a big part of the group in the next few weeks and we’ll still need his presence in the team.”
Patrick Bamford has missed large chunks of the season due to a succession of injuries and is currently out with a foot problem.
Kalvin Phillips and captain Liam Cooper recently returned from respective hamstring injuries, which had kept them out of action from early December.
Marsch confirmed England midfielder Phillips, who has made two substitute appearances since returning to action, will make his first start of the year at Palace.
“The one silver-lining that we have is that Kalvin is back to 100 per cent, so Kalvin will start on Monday,” the American said.
“Obviously it’s never good to lose an important player, but we have a little bit of luck in the situation in that we can bring Kalvin into the mix.
“Adam has been an incredible leader and an incredible player from the moment I stepped through the door.”
Marsch has no other new injury concerns for his seventh game in charge.
The 48-year-old former RB Salzburg boss lost his first two games after replacing Marcelo Bielsa at the end of February, but has since taken 10 points from 12 available in Leeds’ last four matches.
Leeds sit two places above the relegation zone, five points ahead of third-bottom Burnley and four better off than fourth-bottom Everton, who have a game in hand.
The Whites were last in action two weeks ago when they won 3-0 at Watford and Marsch added: “Personally, I’m really excited for the game on Monday and I know our guys are ready to get back at it again.
“It’s a really important stretch for us. Some incredible challenges coming up against some really good opponents, but we’ve done a good job of staying in the moment and going step by step.”
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