Leeds United midfielder Kalvin Phillips has revealed that Patrick Bamford could not sleep the night before the England squad was announced earlier this month.
Bamford has made a great start to life in the Premier League with Leeds, scoring seven goals from their opening eight league matches.
His outstanding form had lead to some speculation that he could earn an international call-up and teammate Phillips, who has four caps, revealed that the striker had his eye on the squad announcement.
“Pat said he couldn’t sleep the other night because the squad was getting announced the next day and he thought he could have a chance,” Phillips told The Times.
“I don’t think he’s far from it. He’s right up there for goals this season [seven in eight games].”
Given the way that Bamford has been playing so far this season, he is now very much in the frame for a call-up – something you may not have predicted last season.
Gareth Southgate has plenty of options at his disposal in the forward areas though and will want to see the 27-year-old keep up this level of output for a prolonged period.
Current squad members Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Harry Kane have made fast starts to the season and have eight and seven league goals respectively, while Aston Villa striker Ollie Watkins has scored six. Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford is also an option for the centre-forward position and remains very much in the plans despite scoring just twice in his seven Premier League appearances so far (via FBRef).
Bamford’s goalscoring has been no fluke so far this season, with only Calvert-Lewin generating more non-penalty expected goals than the Leeds man. This suggests that he is consistently creating opportunities for himself and that this form is perhaps sustainable (via FBRef).
However, Bamford is playing in one of the most competitive positions for a spot in the England squad, and he will need to show over a full season that he offers an option of a similar calibre to Kane, Rashford and Calvert-Lewin.
In other Leeds United news, View: Time for Bielsa to unleash rarely seen Leeds 23y/o – starting v Arsenal