By Nick Ware

29th Nov, 2021 | 9:10am

Paul Merson makes Leeds United prediction after Jeff Stelling relays Patrick Bamford injury update

Paul Merson is adamant Leeds United will remain in the Premier League as long as Patrick Bamford stays fit.

Bamford, 28, has been out of action since Leeds’ 1-1 draw at Newcastle United on September 17.

The England international has missed their last eight Premier League games, with the Whites winning just twice.

However, he looks to be closing in on a return, as Jeff Stelling relayed on Sky Sports Soccer Saturday [27/11/21].

Stelling said: “I think he was talking to Leeds United social media yesterday [26/11/21] and he said he’s almost back, he said his ligament is fine now.”

Merson replied: “Oh as long as he’s alright they’ll stay up, no problem.”

Slow start

The Whites have struggled at the beginning of the 2021/22 campaign, and injuries have been a big part of that.

Stalwarts Bamford and Luke Ayling have all missed significant chunks of the season so far while Robin Koch and Junior Firpo have also spent long periods on the sidelines with various issues.

Bamford was the club’s top scorer last season with his 17 Premier League goals a huge reason for the West Yorkshire outfit’s ninth-place finish on their long-awaited return from the Championship.

However, Bamford did not start the current campaign in the way he ended the previous one.

He scored three goals in his final four appearances of 2020/21, but he opened this season with a single goal in six games, including one in the League Cup, before succumbing to injury.

But while he won’t solve all their problems, his return will certainly act as a big boost to their struggling forward line.

In other Leeds United news, a Premier League rival is in talks to poach Victor Orta.