By Wayne Veysey
Leeds United’s senior stars are finding Jack Clarke an immensely difficult opponent in training sessions at their Thorp Arch headquarters, Football Insider understands.
The winger, 18, has not had a minute of league action this season and has been omitted from the last five Championship matchday squads, partly due to the EFL strict rules on loan players.
A Leeds source has told Football Insider that Clarke is an “absolute nightmare” to mark in training for his teammates and the defenders hate having to stop him.
Clarke is straining every sinew to get back in the Leeds squad and prove his worth after returning on a season-long loan to Elland Road following his £9.5million move to Tottenham.
Marcelo Bielsa praised the attitude and efforts of Clarke at his media conference this week and his fellow first teammers have also been impressed at how he has reacted to his demotion.
The teenager has been restricted to two run-outs in the League Cup since joining the Premier League giants over the summer.
He is not the only big name who has failed to start a league match for Bielsa’s side – Eddie Nketiah and Helder Costa have also yet to make the starting XI – but his freeze-out is particularly stark.
Clarke was on the bench for the first two league games of the campaign and has subsequently looked on from the sidelines, with Jack Harrison and Ben White the two preferred loan starters.
Costa and Nketiah have come on regularly from the bench, with Illan Meslier is the substitute goalkeeper.
In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED a big-name player in Bielsa’s side who is facing the axe ahead of Derby County showdown.