Leeds United ‘Goal Machine’ Wonderkid Returns to Save Boyhood Club from Relegation

Joe Gelhardt, Wigan Athletic loan target, celebrating

Leeds United wonderkid Joe Gelhardt is set to join Wigan Athletic on loan until the end of the season, according to The Athletic’s Phil Hay. After playing a key role in the Whites’ survival last season, the forward that fans lovingly nicknamed ‘Joffy’ returns to Wigan to boost their Championship survival hopes. The striker will look to regain the form that saw him dubbed a ‘goal machine’ by Goal.

Leeds United Wonderkid Joe Gelhardt Moves to Wigan Athletic on Loan

Why is Joe Gelhardt Moving?

After a good January transfer window, Leeds United have a raft of good attacking options available. Patrick Bamford’s two goals against Cardiff City push Gelhardt one step further down the pecking order, and with Rodrigo on good form and Georginio Rutter having just joined the club, there is likely to be a dearth of minutes available for the England youth international.

Following in the footsteps of fellow Thorp Arch youngsters Leo Hjelde and Charlie Cresswell, the move will see the attacker get more minutes and valuable match time in his development as one of the more promising forwards in England.

Read More: Leeds United Sign Georginio Rutter for Club Record Fee

Why Wigan Athletic Want the Move?

Wigan Athletic are in dire straits at the moment. The club sit at the bottom of the table having played one more than Huddersfield Town, with Blackpool, Cardiff City, Stoke City and Rotherham all within five points of the bottom. Joe Gelhardt has experience of relegation scraps, pulling out magic week after week to save Leeds United in a relegation duel that went down to the last day of the Premier League last season.

Loyal Latics will hope for some of this magic at the DW Stadium throughout the rest of the season, as the wonderkid seeks to add quality and inspiration to his hometown’s struggle against the pull of League One.

Read More: Joe Gelhardt’s Contract Renewal Six Months Ago

What are Leeds United Fans Looking For?

As Leeds United transfer news goes, this is an odd one for Whites fans. The Elland Road sporting director, Victor Orta, has been dubbed ‘The Pied Piper of Leeds’ for his ability to attract promising young talent to the club. However, this can lead to clashes. Joe Gelhardt’s pathway to the first team clearly clashes with Rutter’s route.

Fans will hope for an excellent few months of football from the striker. With nineteen matches left in the season, Wigan are far from out of the fight, and Joffy’s moments of magic could bring all-important goals and points in what could be a desperate scramble at the bottom of the league. A good return for Leeds here is a player with success under his belt, itching for more football in 2023/24.

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