By Alex McLeish

27th Feb, 2021 | 9:00am

Leeds players will disagree with Bielsa after surprise pre-Villa claim - McLeish

Leeds United will be delighted if Jack Grealish is missing for Aston Villa on Saturday – despite what Marcelo Bielsa has to say.

That is the view of former Villa and Scotland boss Alex McLeish who, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, heralded the midfielder’s “amazing” form in recent seasons.

Speaking ahead of Saturday’s clash, as quoted by Sky Sports, Bielsa surprisingly claimed he wanted Grealish to be available as it could help lift his own players’ games.

The 25-year-old missed Villa’s 2-1 defeat to Leicester City with a leg injury and remains a doubt for the visit to Elland Road.

Grealish has been a creative talisman for Dean Smith this season with six goals and 12 assists under his belt.

As such, McLeish suggested the Leeds squad might not share their manager’s thoughts on the Villan making a swift return.

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McLeish told Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge: “Jack’s been brilliant, let’s be honest.

“In terms of his ability on the field, he’s been absolutely amazing over the last three or four years and since his senior debut.

“It was a pleasure to be the manager at the time to put him on the bench when I was at Villa in his young days.

“He’s one of these players, when you’re sitting in a stadium and you sit there and say: ‘Give Grealish the ball. Just let him get the ball.’ I was like that watching him in the academy games as well.

“The Leeds players will be happy and Villa will be disappointed.” 

In other news, Kevin Phillips has shot down John McGinn’s Grealish claim at Aston Villa.