Gabby Agbonlahor has backed Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford to bounce back from his England snub with a deluge of late-season goals.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-England and Aston Villa striker is convinced the Leeds’ number nine will plunder goals after being omitted by Gareth Southgate for this month’s World Cup qualifiers.
Uncapped Villa forward Ollie Watkins was given the nod ahead of Bamford who Southgate admitted was unlucky to miss out.
Bamford responded to the snub by netting his 14th Premier League goal of the season in the Whites’ 2-1 win over Fulham on Friday night.
Asked whether he thought Bamford will use his omission as motivation, Agbonlahor told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley: “Yes definitely.
“I reckon it was touch and go from Southgate on whether to pick him. Maybe part of it was the injury that Southgate thought he had.
“The way he’s scoring goals… I think he’ll keep scoring goals as well.
“If he has a really strong end to the season, it will be hard to ignore him. Sometimes with strikers, they might be the ones that do get the call-up for a tournament even if they haven’t had a call-up before. Like Theo Walcott when he went to the World Cup [in 2006].
“You never know. You’ve got Harry Kane guaranteed, Marcus Rashford guaranteed, Dominic Calvert-Lewin guaranteed. That last striker option – Ings, Watkins, Bamford, Abraham, Wilson – it’s all up for grabs on who performs the best in the last 10 games.”
Bamford told Sky Sports after his goalscoring display at Craven Cottage: “I just need to keep working and see if I can get my name in contention for the Euros.
“If I keep going as I am I think I’m in with a shot. If you told me at the start of the season I’d be linked with England I’d say you were bonkers.”