Leeds United hitman Patrick Bamford can be a divisive figure to say the least.
The 26-year-old striker is a firm favourite of Marcelo Bielsa’s, and has started all but two of the Whites’ Championship matches this term.
But he also comes in for a fair amount of stick from supporters, as previously examined by MOT Leeds News.
And while it’s never nice to see a player come in for criticism, it’s understandable that frustrations with the forward bubble over on occasion.
As per reliable statistics account Championship Stats, Bamford led the division in terms of most shots off target and most “big chances” missed this season, as of February.
Those are hardly accolades to be proud of, and things only get worse when you consider the fact that it has taken him 123 shots to score 13 goals in the league this term, as per Whoscored.
As a point of reference, Sheffield Wednesday forward Steven Fletcher has reached the same tally with just 68 shots, as per Whoscored
But Bamford seems happy nonetheless.
Speaking to the Yorkshire Evening Post
last week, he described life at Leeds as “perfect”, and claimed he wanted to stay at the club for the “foreseeable future”.
If he is to realise that ambition, however, he needs to sharpen up in front of goal.
Assuming we get promoted this season, the step up to the Premier League will see the pressure on the striker ramped up again.
And with a career record of just one goal
in 27 top flight appearances, there are no assurances that he will be up to the task.
It’s brilliant that Bamford feels so settled at Elland Road, and Bielsa is evidently a big fan, but if he is to lead the line for us at the very highest level, he needs to kick things up a notch.