Leeds United Elland Road

Noel Whelan believes Leeds United are yet to get the best out of Derby County target Tyler Roberts because of his consistent injury problems.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the boyhood Leeds fan delivered his verdict as Roberts withdrew from the Wales squad for their games against Finland and Bulgaria.

However, a day after withdrawing from the Wales squad Roberts did appear on the bench for Leeds’ 3-0 friendly loss to Stoke City.

Football Insider revealed this week that Derby County were hopeful of signing the 21-year-old and playing him as a striker.

That would be a surprise move on both counts as he ended last season as a regular starter operating in the number 10 role.

Roberts has had a series of major injuries while at Leeds and has managed just 32 league starts in his two-and-a-half years at the club.

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Asked about Roberts’ injury problems, Whelan told Football Insider: “I think that’s probably why we haven’t seen the best of Tyler Roberts yet because I think there’s still a lot more to come.

“We haven’t seen him in a long string of games, it’s stop and start, stop and start and I seriously don’t think he’s hit the peak of his performances yet with his injuries and setbacks. 

“The biggest challenge for Tyler is to keep himself fit, try and get a good run of games under his belt, stay within the squad for a good 15 to 20, if not more, and try find that peak form of his because although we’ve seen glimpses, I do believe there’s still more in him.

“It’s hard to get your confidence and hit that maximum performance level when you’re in and out, stop and start and you don’t get a number of games under your belt.” 

In other news, Leeds United have turned their attention to a new signing after their pursuit of a forward collapses.