Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford is in the form of his life and should be proud of being near the top of the scoring charts after Burnley penalty.
That is the view of Leeds expert Michael Brown, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs after Bamford notched his tenth of the season from the spot in a hard-fought win against Burnley.
Mateusz Klich has been Leeds’ penalty-taker this season but missed from the spot against West Ham before VAR allowed him to retake and score.
Bamford told Leeds Live that, for this reason, Klich allowed him to take the 5th-minute spot-kick against Burnley.
The goal – which came in Bamford’s 15th league appearance this campaign – meant the 27-year-old became the third-quickest Leeds United player to reach 10 Premier League goals.
On this list, he is behind only club legends Mark Viduka and Tony Yeboah, who achieved the feat in nine and 14 matches respectively.
Brown praised the striker’s diligence and hunger in training, as well as lauding the improvement in his overall goal contribution after detractors said he wasn’t scoring enough in the Championship last year.
“I know he’s said in his interview that he’s been practising [penalties],” he told Football Insider.
“So he’s obviously thinking it’s been coming his way, that he could get on them, that he could increase his goal tally
“We know that his conversion rate was questioned last year. But that’s 10 goals now, so he’s only a couple behind the top boys – to be in that pack is amazing for him.”
Leeds were not at their electrifying best against Burnley; only in matches against Liverpool, Manchester City and – somewhat surprisingly – Fulham have they had less possession than the 53% they managed on Sunday (Wyscout).
While it was by no means an ‘ugly’ win, Leeds fans will take encouragement from the fact that they have proved themselves capable of earning three points in more attritional fixtures such as these – as well as the psychological boost of a clean sheet for the back-line with the joint-worst defensive record in the division.
Speaking to Leeds’ media team, magnetic manager Marcelo Bielsa said his side had to “defend closer to [their] own goal” and called it an “energetic and valiant effort.”