Phil Hay gave his verdict on Leeds United’s club-record signing Georginio Rutter on this morning’s Athletic podcast – and while he has sympathy for the Frenchman, he says the striker has hardly been a part of Javi Gracia’s plans.

Rutter, 21, joined Leeds from Hoffenheim in January transfer window for an initial £30m – with a fee likely to rise to the £35m mark. But since joining, he has struggled. Ultimately, he has failed to make an impact since the transfer.

He has clocked up 12 outings for Leeds but 10 of those have come from the bench – the 1-0 loss to Chelsea, and the 2-0 FA Cup defeat to this weekend’s opponents, Fulham. He has not got a fair chance and understandably, so.

In the midst of a relegation battle, throwing in Rutter – who, let’s get it right, is still a youngster – is a massive risk. More so, than using Rodrigo or Patrick Bamford. Hay gave his verdict on Rutter, explaining the sympathy he feels.

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“Rutter – comes on with Liverpool 4-1 up, on against Palace when are 5-1 up – those games are gone. What chance does he have of making a serious impact? I’m not saying he’s looked great, or that of a £30m signing,” Hay said.

“I’m not sure we’re in a position where we can judge. You cannot afford to have a record signing who is making such a little impression. He hasn’t really been a part of the plans if truth be told. Anonymous, but it is hardly his fault.”

Phil Hay has sympathy for club-record Leeds signing Georginio Rutter

Rutter is a player that clearly has an abundance of talent. But you can understand why he is not being given the time to adapt to the Premier League. It all points to one question. Why did Leeds sign him, when a scrap was inevitable?

Surely, Leeds would have been better off signing a proven striker and then getting Rutter in the summer – when that striker had done his job, and kept Leeds up. It might have been different, had Rutter’s goal stood against Fulham.

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