Watford’s Troy Deeney has weighed into the current debate over England strikers, suggesting that Aston Villa forward Ollie Watkins offers more than Leeds United marksman Patrick Bamford.
Bamford was not included in Gareth Southgate’s latest England squad while Watkins got the nod and scored on debut against San Marino on Thursday.
Opting for the Villa man over the Whites striker has proven a controversial decision and launched significant debate with Deeney the latest to weigh in on the subject.
“I think he [Watkins] offers more in his game [than Bamford],” explained Deeney. “He can play on the left or the right of the three as well because he’s done that for Brentford.
“He’s quicker and I just think, this is going to sound really bad but I think he’s a better finisher than Bamford.
“Bamford has a lot of chances and obviously scores goals but he needs a lot of chances to score goals and I think he [Watkins] is a better finisher and that’s not being disrespectful.
“The goals that Watkins scores you can just tell he’s a better finisher than Bamford.”
Watkins outscored Bamford in the Championship last season, finding the net 26 times in comparison to the 27-year-old’s 16, but ultimately it was the Leeds man that fired his team to the title and promotion.
Brentford lost in the play-off final and England’s most recent debutant was forced to make the switch from west London to Villa Park in search of top-flight football.
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Deeney’s decision to weigh into this debate is likely to rile up parts of the Elland Road faithful but he makes some strong points.
While Bamford deserves a huge amount of credit for how well he’s adapted to the Premier League this season, Watkins is a quicker and more versatile forward.
Southgate will likely feel his decision to opt for the latter was justified, at least in part, by the Villa man scoring off the bench on debut.
Despite that goal, however, this debate is likely to stretch on for a while.