The play-offs are a very unforgiving competition, aren’t they?
Having achieved a third-place finish in the Championship under Marcelo Bielsa in the regular season, the Whites looked almost certain to book their place at Wembley Stadium on May 27th after winning the first leg of their semi-final against Derby County 1-0 last Saturday.
Yet the Rams had other ideas.
Boosted by the news that Kemar Roofe would be absent from the return clash at Elland Road, Frank Lampard’s side took the game to their opponents last night by deploying an attacking formation that ultimately paid dividends.
Although Stuart Dallas managed to fire in a fantastic brace for Leeds, a double from Jack Marriot combined with goals from Mason Mount and Harry Wilson secured a famous 4-2 victory for Derby who are now just 90 minutes away from the Premier League.
Whereas the East Midlands-based outfit’s key players stepped to the mark in their biggest match of the season to date, the same cannot be said for Patrick Bamford.
Brought in as a replacement for Roofe, the forward had the chance to justify why the Whites splashed out £7.11m (via Transfermarkt) to bring him to Elland Road from Middlesbrough last summer.
Yet with the pressure to deliver proving too much for Bamford, he produced a shocking performance against Derby in which he offered very little up-front for his side.
Already on thin ice with Bielsa after picking up a two-game ban for deceiving an official in Leeds’ 1-1 draw against Aston Villa last month, the fact that the 25-year-old was booked for diving by Anthony Taylor during Wednesday’s clash suggests that he hasn’t learned his lesson at all.
With Bamford’s lack of discipline costing the Whites in recent weeks, it may be time for the club to consider cutting ties with the forward if they are to bounce back next season.
Having only managed to fire in a measly total of nine goals in the Championship during the 2018/19 campaign, it is obvious that the former Chelsea ace is simply not good enough to lead a club to promotion with his latest failure being the fourth time he has failed in the play-offs in his career.
If Bielsa can offload him in the summer, the Argentine could use the money gained from a sale to make some much-needed improvements to his squad.
What do you think Leeds fans? Would you be happy to see Bamford leave Elland Road following his recent antics? Can your side bounce back from their play-off heartbreak in the 2019/20 campaign? Let us know below.
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