By George Overhill

4th Oct, 2022 | 7:10am

Joe Gelhardt may now need to leave Leeds United on loan in January suggest Adam Pope

Adam Pope has suggested that Joe Gelhardt might need to leave Leeds United on loan in January after the weekend developments at the club.

The young forward, who Jamie Carragher previously said had been a “special talent” since the age of 12 on Monday Night Football (16 May, via Leeds Live), was left out of the squad to face Aston Villa on Sunday (2 October) despite Jesse Marsch confirming he was fit.

Deadline day signing Wilfried Gnonto looks to be on the fast track to the first team after his inclusion among the substitutes instead, and with other young goal scorers in great form for the under-21s, BBC Leeds reporter Pope feels an exit might be on the cards.

Speaking on the first episode of BBC Sport’s Don’t Go To Bed Just Yet podcast (3 October, 18min 25sec) Pope said during a discussion of Gnonto’s rise: “Well where does it leave Gelhardt at the moment? Because he’s either bench or obviously started at Brentford and it didn’t turn out great for him that day.

“But whilst others are scoring loads in the [under]-21s, like your [Mateo] Josephs, your [Sonny] Perkins, Gnonto’s the name at the moment. Where’s it leaving him?

“If it continues like this does that lead towards him maybe going out on loan in January?

“You don’t want to lose him at any point do you?”

Fall from grace

After his heroics helped the Whites avoid relegation from the Premier League last season, Joffy’s status was sky high with the fans, who were routinely frustrated if Tyler Roberts or Dan James were given games up front instead.

The club appeared to feel the same as they tied him down to a new long-term contract in the summer, as he was reportedly seen as “central” to the their future according to Graham Smyth (Yorkshire Evening Post, 30 June).

Yet Patrick Bamford’s latest injury problems haven’t seen the 20-year-old feature regularly, with Rodrigo and James both used there.

Gnonto looks to be somewhat of a pet project for the hierarchy considering the circumstances of his arrival on an otherwise dreadful deadline day, and Perkins is currently on an incredible scoring streak, while Joseph is already on eight Premier League 2 goals, so Gelhardt is in danger of being left behind.

Sam Greenwood, also hailed as a breakthrough figure late last season, has been even more overlooked so perhaps he could be headed for the door as well.

The difference between the glowing terms with which Gelhardt is described at the club, and the confidence that is shown by the actions of the manager continues to be great.

He made some crucial impacts in limited action last season, but if he isn’t to be given a more substantial run then a loan might be in his best interest, but what that means for his long-term prospects is difficult to say.

Currently, whether he stays or goes he looks like being in danger of getting overtaken by a group of even younger candidates, and the big future for him at Elland Road is looking uncertain.

In other Leeds United, the club face a tough task to keep onto their top star as a run on his signature is expected.