Joe Gelhardt under threat at Leeds United as Sonny Perkins emerges in Under-21s - Sky Sports pundit
We’re delighted to welcome former England goalkeeper Paul Robinson as our exclusive columnist as each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Leeds United…
Sonny Perkins’ decision to quit West Ham and join Leeds United in the summer has been justified so far, according to Paul Robinson.
Perkins, 18, left the London Stadium in controversial circumstances when his contract expired at the end of last season with West Ham releasing a statement saying they were “disappointed” with his representatives while another club was accused of making an approach asking for him to be released from his scholarship contract.
It wasn’t Leeds who did that but it was the Whites who won the race for the talented teenager in the summer and they’re due to pay £4.3million in compensation for him [Yorkshire Evening Post].
Since joining Leeds, Perkins’ form for the Under-21s has been magnificent and Robinson believes he has the ability to be able to challenge Joe Gelhardt for a spot in Jesse Marsch’s senior squad.
When asked if he thinks Perkins is good enough to challenge Gelhardt’s spot in the first team, Robinson told MOT Leeds News: “I think he is. If you look at the 15-year-old at Arsenal, it’s a case now more than even where if you’re good enough, you’re old enough.
“Perkins can challenge for a place and why shouldn’t he if he’s good enough?
“He was a big signing and West Ham were very disappointed they couldn’t compete with Leeds on that level.
“He probably thought he had more of an opportunity at Leeds with the manager and the way the club is run and it’s been proven to be the correct decision from the player’s point of view.
“It’s now time for him to start pressing and trying to get into that first-team squad.”
Perkins has scored six goals in five Premier League 2 appearances for Leeds’ Under-21s this season; he’s yet to go through a game without getting on the scoresheet.
Gelhardt, 20, hasn’t played at all for the Under-21s this season with his promotion to the senior squad now seemingly set in stone.
He’s played six times in all competitions, starting one in the Premier League and once in the Carabao Cup.