Dean Jones has dropped an update regarding the future of Leeds United forward Rodrigo.
In a recent interview with Football FanCast, the transfer insider and journalist stated his belief that Jesse Marsch could be left with no other choice but to retain the services of the Spain international this summer as, despite the 31-year-old being the highest earner at Elland Road, Victor Orta is unlikely to be able to recoup anywhere near the £26m he paid for the forward back in August 2020.
Regarding the future of Rodrigo, Jones said: “He’s on silly money, but it was a big signing at the time and Leeds probably paid a bit over the odds for him in a team he didn’t really suit. I don’t think it’s really going to work out for him.
“The problem Leeds have got is they’re stuck because of the money they paid for him. They’re not going to [that receive that kind of money from his sale] unless they can turn around his form.
“So Jesse Marsh is going to work on it, and see if he can find a role for Rodrigo in his team. But first, he needs to know what division they’re going to be in.”
While it is true that Leeds are extremely unlikely to receive anywhere near the £26m fee they splashed on Rodrigo almost two years ago, when considering the 31-year-old’s generally below-par returns following his move to the club, in addition to the fact he is reported to be earning £100k-per-week at Elland Road, the argument that Marsch and Orta must move the Spaniard on this summer is a rather easy one to make.
Indeed, over his 27 Premier League appearances this season, the £13.5m-rated second striker has scored six goals, registered one assist and created two big chances for his teammates, as well as taking an average of 1.6 shots, making 1.3 key passes and completing 0.8 dribbles per game.
These returns have seen the former Valencia forward who Kevin Phillips dubbed “disappointing” earlier this season average a distinctly uninspiring SofaScore match rating of just 6.85, ranking him as Marsch’s seventh-best performer in the top flight of English football.
As such, while it is true that Rodrigo’s returns have not exactly been disastrous, when taking into account the 27-time capped international cost the club a substantial amount of money, coupled with the attacker being the club’s current highest earner, it is clear to see that the Spaniard is not living up to his price-tag nor his salary.
And, with it being reported that Leeds are keen on the signings of both attacking midfielders Brenden Aaronson and Brennan Johnson this summer, it would appear that room must be made in the Whites’ first-team squad for these potential arrivals – leading us to believe that Orta must move Rodrigo on at the end of the season, even if it is for a financial loss.