Loan deal: Gelhardt joins from Leeds United

Sunderland AFC has completed the loan signing of Joe Gelhardt from Leeds United.

The forward moves to the Stadium of Light until the end of the 2022-23 season, joining from the Whites after making 15 Premier League appearances for Jesse Marsch’s side during the first part of the campaign.

Gelhardt, who was linked with several high-profile moves during the window, becomes the Club’s third January arrival following the permanent signings of Pierre Ekwah and Isaac Lihadji.

The 20-year-old was born on Merseyside and started his career with Wigan Athletic, breaking into Latics’ senior set up aged 16 and making his debut against Rotherham United in an EFL Cup tie.

He made 21 appearances in total for the club prior to moving to Elland Road in August 2020 where he scored 11 goals and registered three assists for Leeds’ Under-21s in his first season.

Gelhardt made his PL debut in October 2021 against Southampton and he scored his first top-flight goal two months later, netting the winner in a 3-2 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

He continued to contribute at senior level and ended the season with 22 first-team appearances, which included a dramatic stoppage-time winner against Norwich City and four PL assists.

An England youth international at every age group from Under-16 to Under-20 level, the forward trained with his new team-mates at the Academy of Light on Friday morning and could make his debut next weekend against Millwall.

Gelhardt said: “I know how big the Club is and I’m really looking forward to meeting the lads and trying to help. I spoke with the Head Coach and the playing style seemed a perfect fit for me. I’ve watched Sunderland on the TV this season and seen some positive, attacking football and I can’t wait to get involved.”

Tony Mowbray added: “It is no secret that Joe had plenty of options on the table this month, so it is a testament to the Club and its staff that he felt Sunderland was the best move for him. He has made an impact at Premier League level throughout the past 18 months and he is a really exciting signing, who fits our playing style and will complement a forward line that is already packed with talent. I’m sure the fans can’t wait to see him in action and we are looking forward to supporting his development.”

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