Whelan: Greenwood and Gelhardt may be set for Leeds breakthrough after what I've heard
Noel Whelan has claimed Joe Gelhardt and Sam Greenwood could enjoy breakout campaigns for Leeds United next season.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the recently-appointed Leeds ambassador revealed “everybody has high hopes” for the teenage pair.
Greenwood, 19, made his senior debut in the FA Cup defeat to Crawley Town in January.
Meanwhile, Gelhardt, 19, is yet to feature for Marcelo Bielsa’s side but was named on the bench eight times in the Premier League.
The pair enjoyed fine campaigns for the Under-23s as they fired in a combined 23 goals as Mark Jackson’s side romped to the Premier League 2 Division 2 title.
“As a young boy, and I’ve been there myself, you target getting into the first-team and getting more action and staking a claim to be than number nine of number 10,” Whelan told Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs.
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“That’s what every young kid should be thinking, not just Gelhardt or Greenwood. Whoever you are in that Under-23s squad, the heights you should be hoping to hit are breaking into the first team.
“Those two were outstanding. There’s not much competition for the centre-forward spot. Do we need to go out and buy one? That’s up to them to prove in training and pre-season games.
“I’ve got high hopes for the two of them. I think everybody has. Can they progress again and get more first-team minutes? I think they can.”
Patrick Bamford started all but one of Leeds’ games last season up top, while Rodrigo can also play as a striker.
Bamford scored 17 times in the top-flight – Harry Kane was the only Englishman who found the net on more occasions.