By George Overhill

26th Sep, 2023 | 7:10pm

Joe Gelhardt in line for 'really harsh' Leeds United exit in January after latest Daniel Farke snub - BBC journalist

It “sounds really harsh” but Daniel Farke may see Joe Gelhardt playing somewhere other than Leeds United from January onwards, according to Jonny Buchan.

The BBC Leeds journalist said on Don’t Go To Bed Just Yet (25 September) that after the 21-year-old forward’s “tough start” to the season “you can see him playing at another club” come the winter window, as you “can’t keep all the people happy all the time”.

Gelhardt has only seen six minutes of league action in the past month [Transfermarkt] and saw 17-year-old Archie Gray come on ahead of him for Joel Piroe in the win over Watford ahead of him at the weekend, as the competition for places seems to only be growing.

Buchan said (29m 25s): “Tough start to the season for him. You can see him playing at another club come January, maybe that’s where [Farke] sees him playing.

“Which sounds really harsh, but we’ve just been talking about the strength in depth that they’ve got, and you can’t keep all the people happy all the time in the world of football.”

Adam Pope pointed to the manager’s praise for another player left out, saying: “No, but what he’s done with [Charlie] Cresswell, it was so public and not uncalled for because obviously he deserves it but it wasn’t because anyone asked him a particular question alluding to Cresswell.

“It’s just really clever. Because the trick is you have to keep everybody interested in it.”

Buchan added: “You have to keep the pathway to the first team open to everybody, but you wonder whether that for Gelhardt [is there], particularly with the way that [Glen] Kamara has come into the midfield, that moves Archie a little bit further forward.

“So that’s more competition in that position, we’re seeing [Georginio] Rutter play in that position, we know [Joel] Piroe’s played in that position. I’d put Gelhardt ahead of [Ian] Poveda personally, but you just wonder.”

Odd man out

Gelhardt’s career at Elland Road is going backwards at the moment so the signs are unfortunately starting to point towards his future being elsewhere.

He appeared to be a star in the making when he contributed to some crucial late goals to keep the Whites in the Premier League two seasons ago, and based on Jesse Marsch’s public comments at the time coupled with a new contract that summer everything was looking up.

But he has struggled for game time throughout his period in the first-team, and across 15 top flight outings last term Marsch only gave him 201 minutes, leading to a loan spell at Sunderland which itself became an uphill struggle once his role was forced to change after injury to Ross Stewart.

There has never been any indication of a poor attitude or training badly so his lack of opportunities are confusing, and in some ways mirror a similar situation with Cody Drameh.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, neither were able to show much of anything last season in the small amount of time in the side they were given, and the right-back’s time at the club is effectively over with his Birmingham City loan move covering the end of his Leeds United contract, while it might not be long until Gelhardt follows him out.

The club have routinely looked elsewhere for the most part, so with the starters thriving currently and various other options it doesn’t look like he is close to anything like a run in the side barring a huge turnaround.

Farke made a point to praise Cresswell to keep him mentally involved, and perhaps he plans to do the same for Gelhardt at some point, but the manager may simply see him as well down the pecking order and can’t be forced to change his mind.

In other Leeds United news, Phil Hay says there is “simply no way” back for an exit-bound senior player who is training on their own currently.