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There was never going to be a quick fix for Leeds following Marcelo Bielsa‘s departure from the club, but Marsch’s side gave it their all at the home of the faltering Foxes and only lost via a Harvey Barnes goal in the 67th minute of the contest.

The new manager bounce cannot come quickly enough for the Whites, who have now lost their last five in the Premier League after such an impressive start to life in the top flight last term, and the threat of a relegation dogfight is looming.

Leeds remain above the drop zone in 16th for the time being but are only two points clear of 18th-placed Burnley having played a game more, so Marsch’s side desperately need to find some inspiration from somewhere to keep their stint in the top flight going a little while longer.

The return of Patrick Bamford will certainly be welcomed by a Leeds side who have also failed to score in four of their last five Premier League matches while conceding a whopping 18, and not since November have the Whites kept a clean sheet in any competition.

Marsch prepares for his first Elland Road encounter with Leeds only posting one win from their last six at home in the competition – losing each of their last three – and Villa are anything but profligate on their day.

Instilling consistency have been a struggle for Gerrard since he swapped Ibrox for Villa Park, but two consecutive wins and clean sheets has reignited the Lions’ push for a top-half finish as they occupy 11th spot in the table – two points off ninth-placed Southampton with a game in hand.

Villa are still waiting to string together three consecutive wins this season and tend to blow hot and cold away from home – making a habit of winning one then losing one on rival ground – and it is nearly a year since the visitors last drew a Premier League game on the road.

Only a month has passed since Villa and Leeds played out that 3-3 thriller in the West Midlands, and the visitors have only managed to win one of their last five versus the Whites, although that did come at Elland Road 1-0 last season.

While Patrick Bamford was able to take his place on the bench against Leicester, Tyler Roberts‘s season is over after he underwent surgery on a ruptured hamstring tendon sustained at the weekend.

Liam Cooper and Kalvin Phillips are not quite ready to make their comebacks just yet either, but Diego Llorente should return after missing out at the weekend due to an unspecified issue.

Marsch was able to take the positives from the Leicester defeat and may therefore see no reason to alter his formula here, with Daniel James at the tip of the attack after the American confirmed that Bamford would not start the game.

As for Villa, Gerrard is hopeful that he will have Carney Chukwuemeka as an option for Thursday’s game, but Marvelous Nakamba is still a few weeks away from a return.

Lucas Digne and Ezri Konsa both missed the win over Southampton after testing positive for COVID-19, but Gerrard has confirmed that the duo are back in contention for Thursday.

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However, Gerrard is sure to stick with the same XI barring any jellied legs, with Calum Chambers and Ashley Young preparing to cover for Konsa and Digne once more should the COVID-affected pair not be deemed fit to start.

Leeds United possible starting lineup:
Meslier; Dallas, Ayling, Struijk, Firpo; Koch, Klich; Raphinha, Rodrigo, Harrison; James

Aston Villa possible starting lineup:
Martinez; Cash, Chambers, Mings, Young; Ramsey, Luiz, McGinn; Coutinho; Watkins, Ings

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