Bielsa urged to get Leeds back-up for star falling into same trap as Liverpool man

Date published: Friday 22nd October 2021 4:53 - Jonny Whitfield

Rodrigo, Liam Cooper, Jack Harrison Burnley v Leeds May 2021

Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa needs to sign attacking reinforcements in January because Rodrigo does not supply enough goals, according to one pundit.

Bielsa made the Spain international one of his first marquee signings following the Whites’ Premier League promotion. Indeed, he joined Raphinha, Diego Llorente and Robin Koch as key first-team additions.

Brazilian Raphinha has undoubtedly had the biggest impact upon Leeds in the top flight alongside Kalvin Phillips.

However, Rodrigo cost more – a record acquisition – and has struggled to hit the same heights. This term, he has yet to score after nine appearances in all competitions.

Speaking to Football Insider, Gabriel Agbonlahor insisted that the signing was a mistake from Bielsa and Leeds.

He added that Rodrigo is falling into a trap of working hard and pressing, but not getting goals. Such criticism has been fired at Liverpool’s Roberto Firmino in the past, amid strong form for Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane.

“I think so [Rodrigo’s signing was a mistake],” Agbonlahor said.

“He shows some good touches and stuff but you need to score goals. If you don’t score goals there’s no point being in the team.

“You don’t want him to just be a hard worker who can press without getting the goals.

“I think Leeds need to get to January and try to get reinforcements. Bielsa doesn’t look like he’s doing the job he was doing last season.”

Rodrigo insisted before the current campaign began that he would benefit from a full pre-season with Leeds.

The Spaniard did not get such preparations last term, signing around two weeks before the season began.

Pundit predicts Leeds, Wolves clash

Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa speaks with Raphinha on the touchline during the Premier League match against Watford at Elland Road

Rodrigo’s lack of goals has factored into Leeds’ recent struggles, the Whites only claiming one win from eight Premier League games so far.

That victory came at Elland Road against Watford and they are back at their home ground for Saturday’s clash against Wolves.

The Molineux side have turned a corner of late, but Paul Merson believes that Leeds will nick a win.

As Man Utd struggle, can Spurs, Arsenal or Leicester gatecrash the Premier League’s top four?

He told Sportskeeda: “Wolves staged a great comeback against Aston Villa last weekend in the Premier League. They were never in the game for 80 minutes or so, but they came back to win the derby 3-2 with three quick-fire goals.

“Leeds United, on the other hand, disappointed me against Southampton and didn’t even have a shot on target. This is a big game for both teams, but I just get the feeling that Leeds will nick this one.

“They are a different team at home and will look to win their second Premier League game of the season after comfortably beating Watford earlier this month.”

In his pre-match press conference, Bielsa admitted that the past week has proved one of his most difficult in the Leeds job.

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