By Noel Whelan

19th Nov, 2021 | 7:00pm

Leeds employee: Firpo set to be omitted v Tottenham and youngster in line to start

Noel Whelan has tipped Marcelo Bielsa to start Pascal Struijk ahead of the returning Junior Firpo at left-back for Leeds United against Tottenham.

The former Leeds striker and club ambassador, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, suggested the Argentine boss should stick with the same XI that drew 1-1 with Leicester before the international break.

As confirmed by Bielsa on Friday (19th November), Firpo, 25, is “healthy” but “needs minutes” after recovering from his injury layoff.

A Leeds source told Football Insider earlier this week (November 17) the left-back has been given the all-clear to return against Tottenham.

However, Whelan suggested the physicality of Struijk, 22, would get him the nod for Sunday’s starting XI.

Whelan told Football Insider’s Russell Edge: “I think Pascal Struijk did really well.

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“When you look at the Tottenham side as well, they’re blessed with quite a bit of height in their side. I think we need to be really solid when we go to the Tottenham stadium this weekend.

“They are very strong outfit. You’ve got Harry Kane that is in good form at the minute, coming back from England duty.

“I think we actually played really well against Leicester. We had a nice coherence and cohesion about our side the other day, especially in the midfield area.

“When you think about Struijk as a left-sided centre-half, he did really well getting forward into those midfield zones. That’s the conundrum that Marcelo Bielsa also has to deal with.

“Firpo’s not had many minutes since his injury and since he’s been out. For me, I would stick with the same side that did so well against Leicester.”

Firpo has missed Leeds’ last four Premier League games.

He picked up a muscle injury in training.

In other news, new details can be revealed on an £18m Leeds United deal as paperwork is filed with Companies House.