Ben Parker has praised the performance of Georginio Rutter after the forward started for Leeds United’s under-21s in their play-off win over Aston Villa on Monday night.
Parker was speaking on the LS11 podcast after the Whites booked their place in the final with a 2-1 victory over the Villans at Elland Road.
Georginio Rutter was not able to score for Leeds. But he certainly managed to make an impact, causing plenty of problems for Villa with his running.
Georginio Rutter praised after Leeds U21 display
Obviously, it has not been the easiest time for Rutter since arriving at Leeds in the January transfer window. Of course, he has not been helped by the fact that he became the club’s record signing at a time when the club were crying out for a new striker.
But Parker has lauded his performance on Monday, suggesting that he worked incredibly hard to impress.
“To be fair, Georginio Rutter played, and I thought he did really well first-half. And he kind of set the tempo. We went a goal down, weren’t really playing free-flowing football that the under-21s have been, and Villa were probably good value for the lead,” he told LS11.
“But Rutter played as a number 10, drifted out wide, but then put him down the middle as a nine. And he was just closing down, and chasing after lost causes.”
It is hard to not have a lot of sympathy for Rutter. He had absolutely no say in the transfer fee which brought him to Elland Road.
The blame should be placed at Leeds’ door. It was clear that the club needed another goalscorer when the window opened – as well as a left-back.
But Leeds instead signed a player who looks more suited to being a wide forward, as well as a centre-back who can play on the left.
If the Whites were flying, spending £35 million on a youngster like Rutter would have made a lot more sense. But instead, he was thrown into a relegation battle.
It does appear that he is not yet ready to play week-in, week-out in the Premier League.
Hopefully he will come good at Leeds at some stage in the future. He clearly has the potential to be a success after such a tricky start.