Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford’s injury return date is still unknown despite the good progress, according to reliable journalist Phil Hay.
The Lowdown: Bamford’s agonising season
The Whites striker would have been full of confidence back in August, hoping to repeat last season’s heroics that saw him score 17 goals and register seven assists in the Premier League.
Sadly, Bamford’s campaign has been a nightmare, with multiple injury problems limiting him to just five league appearances in total.
The 28-year-old is now back in training, however, suggesting his comeback shouldn’t be too far away, as Jesse Marsch looks to make a flying start as Leeds manager.
The Latest: Return date still cloudy
Writing in a Q&A for The Athletic, Hay admitted there was no definite return date for Bamford, even though Marsch hasn’t officially ruled him out of Saturday’s trip to Leicester City:
“I don’t remember Bielsa saying he’d be out for the season but he hadn’t given any clear indication of when Bamford would be back. Bamford’s injury was muscular in his foot.
“The nature of it seemed to make a timescale difficult to predict, although the noises from Thorp Arch for the past couple of weeks said he was definitely getting there. Bielsa always had very strict standards when it came to passing players fit, not least the completion of murderball.
“Marsch will probably take a different view – although it’s worth saying that he didn’t confirm that Bamford would definitely be involved this weekend.”
The Verdict: Desperately need him back
Leeds can’t solely use injuries as a reason for their struggles this season but it is clear that they have played a part, with Bamford’s absence particularly damaging.
Without him largely around, the Whites have only scored 29 goals in 26 league matches and there hasn’t been a reliable out-and-out striker to fill the void left by him.
It remains to be seen if Bamford will feature this weekend – he needs to be managed carefully by Marsch – but the fact we still don’t actually know when he will be 100 per cent is certainly worrying given the influence he has as the spearhead of this team.
In other news, Hay has also provided a separate Leeds injury update. Read more here.
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