Leeds United captain Liam Cooper has spoken out in defence of teammate Patrick Bamford, claiming that the whole team needs to do more to take the pressure off the striker.
Bamford has been one of the most talked about Leeds players this season – if not the most talked about. The 26-year-old has netted three since the restart to take his Championship tally to 16 for the season, going one shy of his career best in a season.
But still, the Englishman has come under heavy criticism throughout. Despite his goals tally, and Leeds’ overall tally for the season, they’ve often proved wasteful in-front of goal.
Bamford then is the man to come under the spotlight, but speaking to Yorkshire Evening Post, Cooper explained how Leeds as a team need to score more goals from elsewhere on the pitch, and take the strain off Bamford:
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“We do create a lot of chances, and people are going to come under a bit of scrutiny if they don’t put chances in. But it takes so much pressure off the likes of Pat and Tyler [Roberts] when the other lads are chipping in.”
Speaking about his side’s 5-0 win against Stoke last time out, Cooper went on to explain how much of a difference it makes when the midfielders are converting their chances.
They face a Swansea side today who’ve been unpredictable all season. Steve Cooper’s side have won their last two in the Championship, and could leapfrog Cardiff into 6th today by avoiding defeat at home to Leeds today.
Being the main striker for a team so desperate to win the Championship title will no doubt come with its flaws. Bamford has been absolutely slated at times this season, but he’s never once let it get the best of him.
He retains a good relationship with the fans and he could yet break the 20-goal mark for this season – it’d be a fine achievement for a player who’s been so contested throughout.