Lucy Ward has told BT Sport’s Michael Calvin Football Podcast that she has heard “whispers” of something going on behind the scenes at Leeds United, when discussing Willy Gnonto and his lack of game time at Elland Road.

Gnonto, 19, remained an unused substitute on Tuesday night when it seemed obvious that Javi Gracia should bring the Italy star on to the field of play. Gnonto has failed to start the last five games for Leeds, in the Premier League.

Injured for Arsenal after picking up a knock on international duty, he returned to the bench without playing in the win over Forest. But against Palace, Liverpool and Fulham, he managed just substitute appearances for the Whites.

Then, on Tuesday – despite fans singing Gnonto’s name and calling for Gracia to make a sub – Gnonto remained on the bench. Ex-Leeds United Women’s star and now BT Sport pundit Ward said she has heard murmurs of unrest.

“Why are they not playing Gnonto. I don’t know what it is. I’ve heard little whispers that have gone in the background where it’s not quite all harmony. Managers don’t leave really good players on the bench for no reason,” Ward said.

Leeds United v Brighton & Hove Albion - Premier League
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Ward has heard whispers behind the scenes at Leeds regarding Gnonto

Even if there is unrest behind the scenes, that should not be stopping Gracia from playing one of his best players. Gnonto simply has to start – a player that can change games and drag Leeds out of the scrap against relegation.

The Whites have struggled to see out games, or provide a killer blow against teams this season and that was evident against Leicester. Bringing Gnonto on would surely have helped the Whites secure a crucial three points.

But instead, he was left on the bench. Gracia is a good manager, a clever man – but there is no reason for his axe of Gnonto. It makes no sense. So, as Ward states, perhaps there is something going on behind the scenes with him.

Leeds United v Crystal Palace - Premier League
Photo by Pat Scaasi/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

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