This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Leeds United midfielder Adam Forshaw will miss the rest of the season as he prepares to travel to the United States for hip surgery, it has been confirmed on the official club website, with the 28-year-old heading to the Steadman Clinic in Colorado to undergo surgery.
Forshaw has not played since their away defeat at Charlton in September, with an official club statement confirming: “Knowing surgery was likely to end his season, Forshaw and the Leeds United medical team have explored every possible alternative action,
“Unfortunately all parties have now decided the time has come for Adam to go under the knife to allow him to return in time for pre-season.”
So how big a blow will the loss of Forshaw be for Leeds, over the remainder of the season?
“Massive blow for Leeds. Even though the Whites have been more or less playing without Forshaw since September, this is a crushing blow for them.
“Leeds’ midfield in this poor run have struggled to control games in the middle of the pitch and Forshaw’s presence typically sees them do that a lot more comfortably.
“It wouldn’t have been as big a blow if Leeds weren’t naive in the transfer market and signed a replacement on-loan, just to cover this eventuality.
“Leeds now have to head into the business end of the season with gaps being plugged by players who aren’t as natural to the position, which is not ideal when you’re looking to clinch automatic promotion.”
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“While this is a massive blow to Adam Forshaw, you can’t exactly say that it’s a big blow for Leeds United.
“The Whites have coped for the majority of the season without the midfielder and have generally coped well.
“Marcelo Bielsa will probably have not expected him to return much before the end of the season anyway, so as far as he’s concerned it won’t be too big a loss.
“They do, however, face a problem if another midfielder suffers an injury before the end of the season.
“Kalvin Phillips and Mateusz Klich are absolutely key to Leeds United, and if one of them is ruled out then the Whites could be in trouble.
“Adam Forshaw would have added competition for places, but I’d describe his injury setback as more of a frustration than a blow.”
“This is so frustrating for Leeds and Forshaw, but you could see it coming a mile off, from the way Bielsa spoke in press conferences to how absent Forshaw was on any training footage.
“A niggling hip problem is so hard to shake-off and when it was initially picked up in the last pre-season, Leeds should’ve acted for the long-term and not the short-term.
“Of course, hindsight is a wonderful thing, but if Leeds had their time again, I’m sure they’d have acted much differently.
“The absence of a midfielder with his experience leaves them short in midfield, and there’s now a pressure on Mateusz Klich and Kalvin Phillips to be available for every game.”