By Mark Smith

22nd Mar, 2021 | 3:45pm

Ben Parker blown away by Joe Gelhardt in Leeds U23s win v West Brom

Ben Parker was blown away by Leeds United under-23s forward Joe Gelhardt on Monday afternoon in the huge victory against West Brom.

The young talisman smashed home a hat-trick against the Baggies, scoring two clinical penalties either side of a low finish into the bottom corner.

Parker was thrilled by the composure shown by Gelhardt, who is growing in confidence with each passing game with the under-23s this season.

Speaking on LUTV’s live coverage of the game on Monday, Parker was thrilled by the confidence on show from Gelhardt.

“We’ve punished them yet again,” he said.

“Joe Gelhardt converting, it’s a fantastic finish. The ball is almost stuck under his body, a little bit behind him, so he’s dug it out superbly.

“To find the bottom corner, it’s a fantastic finish from a player playing full of confidence at the moment.”

First team calling.

Marcelo Bielsa, are you watching?

Gelhardt has been on the bench ever since the 2-0 victory over Crystal Palace, and it is about time that he is thrown in for his Premier League debut; even as a substitute.

There isn’t much more that the youngster can do to prove himself at this stage, and we have the perfect opportunity after the international break to hand him the chance.

Sheffield United are the next visitors to Elland Road after the two-week break, and their terrible record gives us the chance to get a healthy lead and then throw Gelhardt on.

His stocky build and low centre of gravity will be real weapons for the Whites and makes him well prepared to deal with the physicality of the Premier League.

It is Gelhardt time.

In other Leeds United news, Raphinha sends a message to Lucas Moura after Spurs v Villa