Former England international Darren Bent has told Football Insider that the loss of Kemar Roofe through injury is ‘not the end of the world’.
The Walsall-born striker was confirmed to be out for the opening weeks of the upcoming season, having suffered a knock to his ankle during the pre-season friendly with Australian side Western Sydney Wanderers.
His injury is not as severe as first feared when he was pictured wearing a protective boot, with fans concerned the 26-year-old could be out for a while after missing two lengthy periods of the 2018/19 campaign in the club’s treatment room.
Instead, he could be back in time for Pontus Jansson’s return to Elland Road, as his Brentford arrive in West Yorkshire on August 21.
In the meantime, Marcelo Bielsa and the Elland Road faithful have to place our trust in Patrick Bamford, a prospect that even Bent’s optimism is unlikely to appease.
“It’s not the worst thing in the world for Leeds,” Bent said, reflecting on Roofe’s injury. “It’s damaging for Kemar Roofe, because he was brilliant at the end of last season when he came back, now Patrick Bamford’s got to step up and take that mantle on.
“It’s a bitter blow for him, he’s been brilliant, and hopefully that ankle injury doesn’t keep him out for long, you’d like to think he could come back in a quick time, maybe just a couple of games into the season.
“It’s not the end of the world for Leeds, but a disappointing blow for him.”
The only thing that will calm the concerns in Bamford’s abilities is the former Middlesbrough attacker starting the campaign with a flurry of goals, having scored on average one every 161.1 minutes during his inaugural second-tier season with the Whites.
It happened to be his best minutes per goal ratio of his career since spending the 2013/14 term on loan with Derby County, but in order to put nine successful strikes on the board, the Grantham-born 25-year-old required 68 shots – or one every 21.3 minutes.
Of Bamford’s 68 efforts in the Championship last season, only 24 found the target, with 27 sailing high or wide of the goal frame.