Darren Bent has claimed hit-and-miss Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford needs to put his inconsistent days behind him to progress to the next level.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former England centre-forward called for Bamford to be more effective on a regular basis if he wants to be a top-level front man.
The spearhead became United’s most expensive recruit in a decade-and-a-half when he was signed from Middlesbrough for £7million last summer.
He suffered two serious knee injuries in his debut campaign and scored 10 goals from 25 matches in all competitions as he mixed some sparkling displays with average ones and poor finishing that infuriated Leeds supporters.
Bent finished his glittering playing career playing for Derby County in the Championship and he revealed how Bamford was spoken about behind the scenes.
“The boys used to tell me at Derby that he wouldn’t turn up for 10 games but the next five games, he’d be brilliant for five and then go missing again – you can’t have that,” Bent told Football Insider.
Bamford has been capped twice by England at Under-21 level and has an impressive scoring record in the Championship – 45 goals from 122 matches – as well as in League One while on loan from ex-club Chelsea.
But he has yet to live up to the immense potential showed when he was breaking through in his late teens and was hailed as a future Premier League and international star.
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