MOT View: Leeds v Reading is perfect match for 26-yr-old to silence his doubters
Patrick Bamford’s dry spell in front of goal is starting to concern some Leeds United supporters.
The 26-year-old has failed to find the back of the net in eight of his last nine Championship appearances and in that time he has missed a glut of chances.
According to stats by WhoScored, no player in the league has fired more shots at goal than Bamford has this season .
Fulham’s Aleksandar Mitrovic has had the same number of shots this term as Bamford but the Serbia international has scored 21 league goals compared to the Leeds striker’s 12.
A lot has been said about Bamford’s lack of finesse and composure in front of goal and with Jean-Kevin Augustin getting closer and closer to being up to speed, there is a real threat of the former Middlesbrough striker being dropped in the coming weeks.
Marcelo Bielsa is not a fan of dropping players but if Bamford continues to miss chances like he did against QPR and, most recently, Bristol City, the Leeds manager is bound to have a change of heart and call on Augustin.
Luckily, Reading could be a very good side for Bamford to rediscover his goalscoring form against this weekend.
Reading’s defensive record has actually been quite decent this season with them conceding 37 goals in 33 matches despite them sitting 15th in the table.
Only five teams can say they’ve conceded fewer and league-leaders West Brom have conceded one less goal.
However, while the Royals’ goals against record is good, they are one of the worst teams in the division for offering chances to opposition strikers.
WhoScored says that they concede an average of 14.9 shots per game, which is the third-worst in the league after Charlton and Luton.
They also average 8.2 interceptions per game, which is the joint-lowest in the Championship along with West Brom.
Leeds average the highest number of shots per game in the Championship [16.5], with Bamford taking a lot of those chances himself.
He simply has to score this weekend.
Strikers are judged on goals and while Bielsa might be happy with his overall play, Bamford needs a goal badly right now to hopefully spark a bit of a run that’ll help Leeds in their bid for promotion.
In other Leeds United news, it’s been confirmed that some first team players could feature for the Under-23s tonight.