Why Joe Gelhardt was not afforded a start for Leeds vs Southampton


An explanation for Joe Gelhardt being forced to make do with a spot on the bench from the off in Leeds United's meeting with Southampton on Saturday has been provided.

In the days leading up to their side's return to action on the back of the international break, many of a Peacocks persuasion made clear their hopes that up-and-coming talent Gelhardt would be afforded just a 3rd start of the Premier League campaign up against Southampton.

This of course comes with star striker Patrick Bamford set for another extended spell on the sidelines, after suffering a 'ruptured plantar fascia' in his foot.

In the end, however, Gelhardt was nevertheless condemned to the bench once more, as Jesse Marsch opted to utilise wide-man Dan James in an unorthodox centre-forward role.

Speaking on the back of the action coming to a close at Elland Road, Leeds' boss was therefore drawn on his choice of striker for Saturday's clash.

And Marsch went on to reveal that, in fact, Gelhardt's substitute role came owing to the youngster missing training during the week, after returning what it is understood has since been identified as a false positive test for Covid-19:

Ward-Prowse clinches a point

Turning attentions back towards the eventual outcome in west Yorkshire this afternoon, Leeds were ultimately forced to settle for a hard-fought share of the spoils.

This came after Jack Harrison's opener just shy of the half-hour mark was cancelled out by James Ward-Prowse early in the 2nd-half, as Southampton's captain ensured that his side returned to the south coast with a point courtesy of yet another stunning free-kick:

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Conor Laird

Conor Laird

Die-hard Juventus fan with a love for all things Italian, and a real soft spot for Arsenal cult heroes. Emmanuel Eboue, Nicklas Bendtner, Philippe Senderos... Give them all statues outside the Emirates.

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