Phillips: This may be real reason Southgate snubbed Leeds star Bamford
Leeds United star Patrick Bamford doesn’t fit the striker profile craved by England manager Gareth Southgate.
That’s according to ex-England international Kevin Phillips, speaking exclusively to Football Insider after the Three Lions manager announced his 33-man long list for this summer’s European Championships.
Harry Kane was the only English striker to score more Premier League goals than Bamford last season, but the Leeds star is yet to receive his maiden England call-up.
Phillips believes Southgate’s decision boils down to simple preference.
He told Football Insider‘s Dylan Childs: “It’s a tough one because I can always go down that route and say ‘it’s Leeds, they’re not the club that they used to be’, but look at some of the football they’ve played this year, they’re a massive football club. He’s scored goals and they’ve had a great season.
“I just don’t think he fits the profile that Gareth Southgate is looking for if I’m being honest, maybe he’s just not his kind of player.
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“I think when he looks around at who is available in the Premier League he just sees better options and I think it’s just purely down to Southgate’s personal choice.
“He will probably come out and say it’s a football decision but I just think sometimes managers make a decision because maybe they just don’t personally fancy that player, so I just see Bamford as one of those.
“It’s not that he couldn’t do the job, I just think it’s a personal decision from Southgate.”
Bamford struck 17 Premier League goals for Leeds in the 2020/21 campaign as Marcelo Bielsa’s side reasserted themselves back in the top-tier after a 16-year hiatus.
The Whites ended the season ninth in the table and finished just three points behind 2019 Champions League finalists Tottenham Hotspur.