By Kevin Phillips

18th Mar, 2020 | 10:00am

Leeds Exclusive: Phillips has major doubts Bielsa favourite can cut it in the PL

Kevin Phillips doubts whether Patrick Bamford will remain first-choice striker at Leeds United if the club are promoted to the Premier League.

The former Sunderland and West Brom striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, admitted he may be given his chance as Marcelo Bielsa appears to “trust him 100%.”

Bamford has received his fair share of criticism this season for his form in front of goal but his manager has continued to show faith in him as a player.

The 26-year-old has scored 13 goals in 38 appearances, all bar two of which he has started, in a United side that currently sits top of the Championship.

When asked if the striker would be trusted to lead the line next season if promotion is achieved, Phillips told Football Insider: “From the outside looking in, he trusts him 100%.

“Even during tough times for Leeds and Bamford, Bielsa has stuck with him. Whether that is his stubbornness… He is doing everything that Bielsa asks of him and he is very much a team player.

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“Of course, the Premier League is a huge step-up from the Championship. Unfortunately, for Patrick, he needs three or four chances before he scores but in the Premier League, you may only get one chance, especially for a promoted team.

“The manager has shown this season that he trusts him, whether it is enough to play week in, week out in the Premier League I am not so sure. It is a big jump to the Premier League.”

Bamford has experience of playing in the Premier League for the likes of Crystal Palace, Burnley, Middlesborough and, Norwich.

However, in his 27 appearances in the competition, he has only netted once.

In other Leeds United news, Noel Whelan has told Football Insider he fears for the club’s promotion bid after off-pitch development.