We’re delighted to welcome former England goalkeeper Paul Robinson as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Leeds United…
Paul Robinson thinks that Rodrigo could start alongside Patrick Bamford on Saturday, despite only hooking up with Marcelo Bielsa on Monday.
Rodrigo has been with Spain on international duty since signing for Leeds and got the assist for the equalising goal against Germany on Thursday.
He was an unused sub in the game against Ukraine on Sunday.
Leeds kick off their Premier League campaign against Liverpool on Saturday.
Marcelo Bielsa likes to coach his players extensively before putting them in the first team but Robinson, talking exclusively to MOT Leeds News, thinks Rodrigo could come straight in.
“I think there’s a chance that both Bamford and Rodrigo start because we know Rodrigo can play out wide, coming in off the right-hand side with his left foot,” Robinson said.
“However, I think if Jack Harrison and Helder Costa are fit, they’ll probably start wide and then for the start of the season it’s Bamford or Rodrigo as the nine.
“As the season goes on, there will be injuries and suspensions, and the beauty of Rodrigo is that he can play any of those four attacking positions.
“But, I think for the start of the season it’s going to be a straight choice between Bamford and Rodrigo. The only thing that goes against Rodrigo is the amount of time he’s had on the training ground.
“Unless he hits the ground running it might take him a bit of time to get up to speed. He had some injuries, he had a stop-start season with Valencia, so it depends on his match fitness.
“But he’s a top player and to play nine for Spain shows how good he is.
“His pace on the counter-attack, getting the ball to him quickly will be key, and he can do the fox in the box as well. They’ve bought a really good player.”
Rodrigo has become Leeds’ record signing, with his £27m fee smashing the £18m they paid for Rio Ferdinand in 2000.
In other Leeds United news, Sky Sports reporter outside Finch Farm claims Leeds in hunt for £100k/wk Everton attacker