By Joe Ellis

17th Sep, 2022 | 3:10pm

Wilfried Gnonto 'in love' with Leeds United already - Michael Skubala

Wilfried Gnonto appeared for the first time in a Leeds United shirt on Friday night playing for Michael Skubala’s Under-21 side.

A whopping 6-2 win in front of nearly 10,000 people at Elland Road saw Patrick Bamford net a hat-trick on his first game back from injury with other goals from Crysenscio Summerville, Liam Cooper and Sonny Perkins.

Gnonto got his first minutes in English football and Skubala, who only took charge of the Under-21s during the off-season, thinks he is already settling fast in Yorkshire.

“I think he was really excited by the crowd tonight, he was like ‘wow, okay, this is a 21s game, this is amazing’,” Skubala said, as quoted by Leeds Live.

“So he’s in love with Leeds already, the biggest smile you’ll ever see. I think again, that takes time and as we see more and as Jesse sees more then he will make those decisions really.”

Patience

Bamford’s epic comeback to the pitch, albeit for the youth side, will have been a great encouragement for Jesse Marsch who needs the England international to come in and lead the line for his senior Whites team.

Gnonto may have been called up for the Italian national team once again this week but he is still extremely young to be the leading man at the Premier League level.

The same goes for Joe Gelhardt and Sam Greenwood and with Rodrigo not only injured himself but more suited to being the number 10, Bamford’s return can not come soon enough.

The Italian teenager will take a while to settle properly at Elland Road and it might not be this season that Leeds United fans see the best of him but it will come eventually.

The key is to not put too much pressure on him from the get-go and trust that when he does come good, it is better than anything already at the club.

In other Leeds United news, UEFA have relaxed their stance on domestic games being played during Champions League nights which could help the Whites.