Jermaine Beckford has told The Leeds United Show that he wants to see Jamie Shackleton, Pablo Hernandez and Ian Poveda to start in Leeds’ FA Cup third round tie this weekend.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side face Crawley looking to avoid an upset. However, with the Premier League the obvious priority, it would be no surprise if Bielsa made plenty of changes.
As soon as the draw was made, it is likely that a number of under-23 players would have set their sights on the tie as another potential opportunity to impress, or even make a debut for some.
Beckford suggested that he wanted to see a number of youngsters feature. But he also named three of the first-team players he thinks should be involved.
“I want to see Poveda, Shackleton, Pablo get a run out,” he told The Leeds United Show. “I say have a run out. Pablo shouldn’t be having a run out. He should be playing week-in, week-out because he’s a magician. The guy is incredible.
“But he’s had his injury issues earlier on in the season. He seems to have come through that now. He’s starting to find his form a little bit. And I think this game and the Brighton game would be two perfect games for him to find his feet and get himself back into the starting XI mould.”
TBR View: Hernandez the obvious captain for FA Cup tie
On paper, Leeds should have enough quality to rest many of their key players and still get through this weekend.
As Beckford notes, Hernandez is one of the senior members of the squad who should want to start. He has played a more peripheral role in recent weeks.
But he is arguably the obvious candidate to captain a younger side on Sunday. And as Beckford also suggests, it may provide the Spaniard with a platform to show why he should feature more prominently when they return to top flight action.