Joe Gelhardt has completed a loan move from Leeds United to Sunderland this afternoon.
Leeds have been unable to offer Gelhardt the necessary game-time this season in the Premier League, with the 20-year-old starting only once in the league and making a further 14 appearances from the bench.
Rodrigo has struck 12 goals in all competitions, whilst Patrick Bamford is fit again. Leeds have also added Georginio Rutter to their squad this January to bolster Jesse Marsch’s options, paving the way for Gelhardt to leave.
Leeds have confirmed this afternoon that Gelhardt has joined Sunderland on loan for the remainder of the season, bolstering Tony Mowbray’s own attacking unit as they bid to get themselves into the Championship play-offs.
Sunderland’s interest was first revealed by Leeds All Over earlier this month, although the Black Cats were not alone in courting Gelhardt in the Championship, with Wigan Athletic and Swansea City two others that were heavily linked.
Gelhardt has made 41 senior appearances for Leeds, scoring two goals and registering a further seven assists in that time. Within a statement, the Whites confirmed that the striker still remains part of their long-term vision.
”Gelhardt has now been allowed to make a temporary switch in order to gain regular first team football, but very much remains part of the club’s long-term plans.”Leeds’ club statement read.
The big updated Joe Gelhardt quiz – Can Leeds United fans score 20/20?
Gelhardt has had a tough six months or so at Leeds and this is undoubtedly the right thing for him and his immediate career.
A loan into the Championship can help him rediscover that spark we saw last season, whilst being thrust into the battle of a play-off pursuit will test his character along the way.
Leeds have depth for the remainder of the season and should have the firepower to shoot themselves clear of trouble without Gelhardt.