By Noel Whelan

17th Nov, 2021 | 6:00pm

Leeds employee 'sure' on Bamford comeback role against Tottenham after latest

Noel Whelan is “sure” Patrick Bamford will return to the Leeds United bench rather than the starting XI if he is passed fit to face Tottenham on Sunday, according to Noel Whelan.

The former Whites striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted manager Marcelo Bielsa won’t be willing to take any risks as the 28-year-old returns from an ankle injury.

As quoted by Sky Sports (November 5th), Bielsa admitted he could not put a date on Bamford’s return – adding that it is “not a simple injury”.

The England international has not featured for Leeds United since September 17th.

Bamford claimed an assist in 90 minutes of action against Newcastle before breaking down with an ankle complaint after the game.

The striker scored 17 goals in 38 league games last term.

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Whelan insisted Bielsa will “ease” Bamford back into the side when he returns to fitness – just as in the case of Kalvin Phillips.

“If Patrick is going to be fit for the game, we do know that Bielsa does tend to ease players back in by sitting them on the bench,” he told Football Insider‘s Ewan Kingsbury.

“We don’t know how much training he’s had. No matter how experienced and important you are, the manager likes to take time to ensure the player is fully up to speed.

“We saw that with Kalvin Phillips against Wolves when he had that calf injury in October. I’m sure, if fit, Patrick will be on the bench.”

Leeds United travel to Tottenham on Sunday as the Whites bid to pull away from the relegation zone.

One player who could return to the starting eleven is Junior Firpo, with a Leeds source telling Football Insider he has been given the all-clear to feature.

In other news, Billy Gilmour has been told to sign for Leeds by pundit after Tuchel reveal.