Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford revealed that he would have lost his mind if he did not play FIFA during the first lockdown almost a year ago.
It was an unprecedented time and footballers came up with unique methods to stay fit and entertained.
Bamford desperately missed match action and found the only way he could get close to the competitive feeling of a game was to play FIFA Ultimate Team.
Appearing on The Official Leeds United Podcast [40:28], he said, “I think it would have been impossible [to go a year without playing].
“I know technically it’s a job but it’s also a hobby and what you feel like you’re born to do.
“I honestly don’t know what I’d have done if it had gone from [last] March until now for the whole year, I’d have lost my mind just waiting.
“To get that bit of competitiveness in the first lockdown I started playing FIFA Ultimate Team to try and compete and just have that bit of competitiveness back.”
Worked a treat
It can be argued that Bamford has not been the same player since he returned from that first lockdown, which is a good thing.
Whatever he did to stay focused clearly worked as he scored three goals from eight starts in that final part of the season.
The Whites also lost just one game out of nine so clearly the whole squad benefitted, and Bamford has not looked back.
He has gone on to score 13 goals in the Premier League and could even be in line for an England call-up soon.
Interestingly, the 27-year-old had just three goals in 12 games at the beginning of 2020, so those FIFA sessions clearly helped.
Whatever he has done since is also working a treat.
We think it just comes down to his mindset and his determination to succeed.
He gives his all for the team and with the extra quality of Raphinha by his side he has developed into a top player.
Bamford will still miss chances on occasion but he is flourishing in this Leeds side currently.
In other Leeds United news, a Sky Sports pundit suggests Leeds should sell a first-teamer player in light of a recent update from Phil Hay.