Shot-shy and profligate in equal measures, that sums up Leeds United’s frontline at the moment. Fans are becoming increasingly rattled that something needs to be done.
It’s not that the Whites are actually suffering that much, they are still in a handy fourth place in the table, only two points shy of top spot. Yes, results and goals have turned into something of a dip – that much is clear from the sparkling start Leeds had to the season.
The potential is there for Leeds United to spark again, players are coming back from injury, important players such as the influential Pablo Hernandez. Luckily for the Whites, teams around them have faltered at the same time, but luck is fickle and both the team themselves and fans cannot rely on it in the long-term.
There is a growing concern that investment in the team is needed in the January transfer market. Much of this concern has been about bringing in a spearhead striker, a goalscorer who can lead the line at Elland Road.
Most answers to the ‘January question’ involve stupid amounts of money as player values inflate, but help could very much be at hand for Leeds United closer to home than many might think. That help – Jay-Roy Grot.
Grot is currently out on loan at Eredivisie side VVV-Venlo, slated for a full-season loan and set for a return at the end of June to Elland Road. His début season at Elland Road didn’t really work out last year, and he fell victim to the critical voices of many Leeds United fans across social media.
A loan back to his native Holland was probably best for all parties. It allowed the Whites to see Grot get proper, competitive game time and for Grot himself to re-establish his flagging confidence. In pre-season he was in and amongst the goals, albeit it against sides that could easily be termed as ‘minnows’.
The real proof of the pudding was surely to be his performances in the Dutch Eredivisie, a campaign for Venlo that is now nine games old after today’s game against ADO Den Haag. It was a game that Grot featured in, as he has in all of Venlo’s previous eight games; it was a game that the rangy youngster also scored in – finishing off a goalmouth scramble.
The goal against Den Haag was Grot’s second of the campaign, coming after his goal and assist against NAC Breda in late September. It was enough to lift Venlo out of a congested mid-table mire and into fifth place. It is also a goal that might mean that his fortunes could be worth following.
Should he kick-on from here, should Grot continue to bag more goals, then Leeds United might want to reconsider the length of his full-season loan and recall the youngster for the January-May run-in.