Atheltic journalist Phil Hay has said that Rodrigo has been bought as a number nine and that Leeds United will see him as a “marked improvement on Bamford”. 

Leeds smashed their transfer record when they signed Rodrigo from Valencia last week for an initial £27m fee.

Rodrigo can play across any of the forward positions but Hay is convinced he will be the main striker for Leeds going forward.

However, Hay thinks Patrick Bamford will start up front for Leeds in their first Premier League game against Liverpool a week on Saturday.

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Talking on the latest episode of the Ornstein & Chapman podcast on The Athletic, Hay said, “Rodrigo is significant, an elite forward with great pedigree. He smashed the club record that was set 20 years ago.

“There were other options, most notably Ollie Watkins at Brentford.

“But realistically Watkins was going to cost the same and there wouldn’t have been a significant difference in wages. So they were drawn into a discussion with Rodrigo about a month ago but no one really thought it was going to happen.

“They see him as a very, very good number nine who, if needed, can play elsewhere. I think they will feel deep down that, in terms of finishing, he’s a marked improvement on Bamford.”

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Hold fire on Rodrigo

The official Fantasy Premier League game is taking its time assigning a price and position to Rodrigo, with Leeds fans eager to get him in their side.

Perhaps they’re trying to work out where he’s actually going to start for Leeds.

However, we’d advise caution. Like Hay said, you can expect Bamford to start against Liverpool while Rodrigo gets Bielsa fit.

Rodrigo signed for Leeds and went straight out on international duty with Spain.

Leeds have kept the fans happy by posting a couple of clips of Rodrigo from the Sapin camp, but it might be a while before he’s unleashed from the start in the Premier League.

However, it does sound as if he’s been signed as a striker and not a wideman or number 10.

Bamford will have the chance to stake his claim for the striker shirt first but Rodrigo is a level above and Bamford must be worried that he’s going to be demoted to the bench if he doesn’t find his shooting boots straight away.

In other Leeds United news, Leeds table £25m bid for £25k/wk attacker described as ‘different level’

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