By Saikat Mandal

5th Nov, 2021 | 9:30pm

David Prutton suggests Leeds youngster Joe Gelhardt should get more minutes

David Prutton has suggested that Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa should give more minutes to young talent Joe Gelhardt.

The 19-year-old joined Leeds from Wigan Athletic in the summer of 2020 for a reported fee of £1m [The Sun]. He is a highly-rated young forward and has impressed in cameo roles already for the senior team.

This season, Gelhardt has made two Premier League substitute appearances, and a further two appearances have come in the EFL Cup.  

David Prutton has suggested in his column for the Yorkshire Evening Post that the youngster could be a natural replacement for Patrick Bamford, and he should be getting more minutes.

The Sky Sports pundit has suggested that Gelhardt can be an answer for Marcelo Bielsa in the absence of Patrick Bamford.

“The cameos I have seen of Gelhardt make me think that, given a longer run in the team, you are possibly going to get that with him,” wrote Prutton for the YEP.

“I feel like he should get more minutes, absolutely. He is a younger player and the path he has taken to get to that team is a bit different but Leeds have got to chuck him in and trust him at some point.

“A player such as him needs a run of games, as any player does and as we saw with Patrick. Patrick was persevered with by Marcelo and look what a player he has turned into for Leeds.

“Gelhardt is obviously a lot farther back in his journey but he seems to be robust enough to play in the Premier League and goals will come.”

Big call

Bamford has now missed as many as seven games and Bielsa has refused to put a timeline when the England striker can return to training.

He has aggravated his ankle injury and could be out for a while.

Leeds have missed Bamford heavily and it has affected their overall performance. Bamford scores goals, but most importantly he is pivotal to how Leeds play.

His energy and desire to chase down, run in channels makes him a valuable asset under Bielsa. The Argentine has used the likes of Rodrigo and Tyler Roberts in his place, but they bring different qualities.

Gelhardt could be an option. Last month, Adrian Durham praised him heavily, saying he was “brilliant” and “astonishing” against Wolves.

He seems to be ready enough to play in the Premier League and Bielsa must give more minutes to further boost his confidence.

Leeds will face Leicester City in their next Premier League game on Sunday at Elland Road.

In other Leeds United news, Paul Merson has dropped a huge transfer claim on one Whites star with an imminent exit on the cards