Noel Whelan is over the moon that Liam Cooper will be available for Leeds United this week having recovered from injury.
The former Whites and Coventry forward, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, claimed that the return of the 29-year-old will greatly benefit new signing Robin Koch.
Cooper missed Saturday’s thriller at Anfield with a muscle injury sustained on international duty and Koch made his debut for the club alongside 21-year-old Pascal Struijk.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side face Hull City in the EFL Cup tomorrow night and Cooper is expected to be fit for selection against his former club.
However, the priority will be for the Leeds captain to be fit and ready to welcome Fulham to Elland Road on Saturday.
When asked by Football Insider how big a boost the return of the Scotland international would be, Whelan said: “You do miss Liam Cooper when he is unavailable.
“He has grown into a leader during his time at Leeds. I think he has a little bit more aggression, quality on the ball and knowhow to play the game. He is older, wiser and has more experience than Struijk.
“Struijk looks like a great acquisition for the future and he will be used throughout the season when needed but it will be great to have our captain back. Any club will miss their captain, no matter what position they play.
“It will also benefit Koch having Cooper there alongside him. I am looking forward to having him back and I am sure he cannot wait to lead the side out against Fulham in his first Premier League outing.”
When speaking on Cooper’s injury after the 4-3 loss to Liverpool, Bielsa said: “Cooper came back with a slight muscular problem from playing with Scotland.
“We don’t think this will stop him from playing in the next match.
In other Leeds United news, Danny Mills in awe of attacker who started against Liverpool.