The Lowdown: Bamford injured
The England international endured an injury-hit 2021/22 season, with ankle, hamstring and foot issues limiting him to just seven Premier League starts.
The 28-year-old suffered his first injury problem of 2022/23 against Southampton last Saturday when he was forced off with an abductor problem.
Bamford, who has begun the season as captain in Liam Cooper’s absence, was replaced by Dan James at St Mary’s, although Jesse Marsch confirmed after the game that the striker’s injury is “not bad” and claimed that he could be back in training before the match against Chelsea this coming Sunday.
The Latest: Whelan’s comments
Speaking to Football Insider, Whelan was reacting to the update on Bamford’s problem not being too serious, describing it as a ‘massive’ boost for Leeds.
The Elland Road ambassador said:
“We don’t want to be missing Patrick – he’s the captain by rights at the moment.
“He gives us a different dimension when he’s playing. We’ve got that focal point that allows Rodrigo to take up good positions and allows Jack Harrison to push further forward.
“He’s very important to this side, so to hear that he’s back in training soon and it’s not a serious injury – it’s massive.
“This might be a season where he needs time to rest and recover a bit more. He’s just come back from a really horrible season filled with injuries.”
The Verdict: Phew…
Joe Gelhardt didn’t travel to Southampton due to an issue of his own, highlighting Leeds’ lack of depth in attack, so having Bamford out for the foreseeable future would’ve been a major blow, not least because of the 19 Premier League goals that he has scored since the Whites returned to the top flight two years ago.
Where will Leeds finish this season?
While it looks as if he could feature on Sunday, it could still be wise for the Leeds hierarchy to explore a new signing in the final third before the September 1 deadline.
Hopefully Bamford will avoid any serious injury issues this term, but as Whelan mentions, the club may need to be especially careful with him as the season goes on given the troubles of 2021/22.
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