By Noel Whelan

11th Jan, 2022 | 8:45pm

Leeds 'down to the bare bones' after 'huge' Gelhardt update - Whelan

Leeds United “surprise package” Joe Gelhardt will be a “massive miss”, according to Noel Whelan.

The former Whites striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, claimed Marcelo Bielsa’s side are “down to the bare bones”.

Bielsa, speaking after Leeds United’s FA Cup third-round loss against West Ham and quoted by Leeds Live (9 January), confirmed Gelhardt, 19, will be sidelined for “three or four weeks” after colliding with a teammate in training.

The Argentine also confirmed Patrick Bamford has suffered a fresh hip injury in training after recovering from a hamstring problem.

Whelan insisted Leeds United are “lacking options” upfront at present.

“This is huge,” he told Football Insider‘s Ewan Kingsbury.

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“He’ll be a massive miss for Leeds United because he’s playing with no fear. He’s a player who can really drive and take the game to opposition defensives.

“We’ve seen him do it a couple of times before, winning penalties at important times through really positive running.

“He’s a player that the opposition don’t know too much about, as well. He’s been a real surprise package for us.

“We’re lacking options when it comes to that central figure leading the line, especially with Patrick Bamford also out yet again. We’re down to the bare bones.”

Sam Greenwood led the line in the absence of Gelhardt and Bamford during the FA Cup defeat, making his full debut for the Whites.

Leeds United could also call on Tyler Roberts after he served his one-match suspension for an accumulation of yellow cards on Sunday.

The Welshman has been utilised as a striker this term by Bielsa.

In other news, major update on Leeds United talks over new signings this month.