Leeds United have had a difficult second season in the Premier League with the Whites now in a relegation battle with just 23 points on the board from 27 games played.
Injuries have certainly played their part in the Yorkshire club’s dismal campaign, with the likes of Liam Cooper, Kalvin Phillips and Patrick Bamford all missing substantial periods of the season.
Now it seems as though the season has ended for one other unlucky Leeds figure after Tyler Roberts was recently ruled out for three months after undergoing surgery to fix a hamstring injury he picked up in the club’s recent 1-0 defeat against Leicester City.
While this will be a blow for Jesse Marsch’s side and their hopes of avoiding relegation, this could pave the way for the newly appointed Leeds boss to give one other player the chance to play a bit more regularly and potentially save the club from the dreaded drop down to the Championship.
Labelled as an “absolutely outrageous” player by Beren Cross, 19-year-old striker Joe Gelhardt has made 11 appearances in the Premier League this season but has only started two of them, chipping in with one goal and three assists along the way.
With Roberts now ruled out for the next few months and the fact that the Whites haven’t managed to score a goal in their three previous league games, it seems as though Marsch could do with making some changes to his team, particularly at the top of the pitch.
As well as the Welshman’s unfortunate injury, Rodrigo and Dan James have only found the back of the net once between them in the club’s past five league outings, which could also persuade the American to give the teenage striker a chance to lead the team from the start to see if he can be a more clinical presence than some of the other attacking options in the squad.
Also, with Leeds set to face Aston Villa on Thursday evening in their latest league fixture and the fact that Bamford was only fit enough to be an unused substitute over the weekend, Marsch could turn to the £2.7m-rated youngster if he doesn’t want to put the more experienced striker in from the start and risk him getting another injury.
If this were to happen and the teenager did find some goalscoring form, he could well be seen as the club’s “saviour” for this campaign, as he has been described before by Cross.