Adam Pope points out predicament Rodrigo finds himself in for Leeds United
Rodrigo has been crucial for Leeds United in the absence of Patrick Bamford, although the Spaniard could find himself suspended with just one more booking.
The forward has filled in for Bamford since the Englishman suffered an ankle injury in mid-September. Marcelo Bielsa’s preferred frontman has so far missed five Premier League fixtures, with Football Insider recently reporting that there was no set return date for the England international.
And, while Rodrigo will be seen as the go-to backup while Bamford remains sidelined, he must be wary of the fact that one more booking puts him out of contention through suspension – with the accumulation of bookings only reset after Christmas – as pointed out by the BBC Radio Leeds’ Adam Pope.
A crucial presence
Rodrigo has thus far underwhelmed since his club-record arrival at Elland Road although, in Bamford’s absence, has really stepped up to the mark for his side.
The 30-year-old has bagged two in his last two Premier League outings, dazzlingly dominating the second half as his spot-kick earned Leeds a point against Wolves before his winning strike sealed all three points against Norwich last time out.
He’s been one of the Whites’ most influential players in recent weeks, crucial in aiding them to an important couple of results in their previous two outings.
Should he receive another booking while Bamford remains absent, his suspension would leave Bielsa with few options. The off-form Tyler Roberts has never properly looked adept at Premier League level while Joe Gelhardt, who is rapidly becoming one of the country’s most exciting prospect, is still very raw.
Rodrigo will have to be disciplined in the coming weeks to maintain the crucial presence he has when leading the side in Bamford’s absence – starting with a huge tie at home to Leicester City on Sunday.
In other Leeds United news, here’s a predicted lineup for that clash with the Foxes.