Patrick Bamford revealed an important factor that has allowed him to work so well with Leeds United winger Raphinha.
The Brazilian has excelled recently with four goal contributions in four games, and Bamford has rediscovered his scoring form with two goals in the same period.
They have linked up well, particularly against Leicester and Crystal Palace, and the striker shared why that is – he can speak fluent French with him.
Featuring on the Official Leeds United Podcast, Bamford said (15:15), “Because I can speak French a little bit we kind of speak in French.
“We kind of got that rapport straight away because I made that effort.
“We’re always talking on the pitch (in French), telling each other where he wants it or where I want it, so we do get on well.”
“It’s constant, we seem to link up in everything at the minute.”
Podcast host Emma Jones was taken aback by Bamford’s shock reveal, and in response she said, “That’s incredible, is there any end to your talents?”
Bielsa to thank once again
It should not be too surprising to see Raphinha performing so well as Marcelo Bielsa has proved it is not essential to speak English.
Understanding teammates on the pitch is a different conundrum, however, and it makes Raphinha’s performances even more impressive.
He and Bamford may speak French, but their communication seems telepathic at times.
Bamford’s goal at Leicester was a good example of that, as Raphinha knew exactly where to play the pass as soon as he picked up the loose ball.
The pair deserve credit but it is Bielsa that has got the best out of the Brazilian.
The 24-year-old has been terrific on and off the ball.
Talent plays an important role but following Bielsa’s instructions have been key for Raphinha, and allowed him to record some of the best stats in terms of closing players down.
At the same time he has been given the freedom to drift from his position, as Bielsa recognised early-on that Raphinha can unsettle the opposition through his movement.
He could get better as his English improves, too, and we are keen to see a partnership with Luke Ayling blossom in the coming weeks.
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