Graham Smyth has been speaking on the latest edition of the Yorkshire Evening Post’s Inside Elland Road podcast about all things relating to Leeds United.
Gelhardt was signed from Wigan Athletic in the last summer transfer window, and he has made 16 league appearances for the Under-23s in which he has scored 11 goals and provided three assists.
This form has seen Marcelo Bielsa name Gelhardt on the bench on eight occasions in the Premier League, but as of yet, he hasn’t been handed a first-team chance but Smyth would like to see it happen.
He said: “I talked to one of my colleagues last night [Monday, versus Liverpool] when it wasn’t really happening for Bamford, which was just before he hit the bar.
“I said, ‘he could just stick on Gelhardt’. I am really keen to see him in first-team action, just because, we’ve said before, he represents potential; he represents the unknown.
“Could he do it at first-team level? It’s very harsh to put that expectation on someone so young and so inexperienced, but he must be close because he’s on the bench, and he wouldn’t be on the bench if Bielsa didn’t feel he could come on and play if needed. I’d really like to see it.”
Do you think Gelhardt deserves a first-team chance?
Yes, would love to see him
No, he needs to be patient
TIF Thoughts on Gelhardt…
The fact that Bielsa has put Gelhardt on the bench on so many occasions does indicate that he is close to being given a chance.
However, we wouldn’t be surprised if Bielsa decides against this and makes Gelhardt wait for his chance, having taken this long to hand him an opportunity.