Leeds United ace Tyler Roberts has voiced his gratitude for the medical department at Thorp Arch after helping him return from persistent shin problems.
Roberts has struggled to offer boss Marcelo Bielsa an option to call on this season, with the seven-time Wales international limited to just four starts across all competitions and none since November.
The 21-year-old began the campaign on the sidelines having had fluid drained from his knee at the climax of last term, which denied Roberts the chance of featuring until September’s trip to Charlton Athletic.
He stayed in the side for the following two months and made 12 outings in all – eight of which came from the bench – but was forced off after 35 minutes away to Reading and was dealt consistent setbacks in his recovery from the shin problem.
Bielsa was finally able to call on the West Bromwich Albion product again as we demolished Hull City last month and beat Huddersfield Town last week. Yet despite scoring twice in the Tigers thrashing, just being back on the field is what has brought a smile to Roberts’ face.
“I can’t say enough about the medical team,” Roberts said, via quotes the Yorkshire Evening Post. “They’ve been amazing, they’ve been patient and been through every possibility to get me back to full fitness. For everything they’ve done, I can’t thank them enough and they will be one of the main parts of any success I have.
Should Bielsa start Roberts in our next fixture?
“My team-mates have been amazing. We are a good bunch of lads and we all get on really well. At a club it is important that all of the lads gel well together and they have always helped me through it. I’ve tried to keep as positive as I can be, they’ve been positive with me, and we’ve carried on laughing and smiling and kept the faith.
“Scoring the two goals was an amazing feeling, but I was more happy to just be back out on the pitch as it’s been a tough run for me. To get back out there and help the lads secure the three points was great.”
Roberts managed 23 minutes at Hull last month after coming on as a second-half substitute for Patrick Bamford, who he again replaced 11 minutes from time in the West Yorkshire Derby win over Huddersfield.
Bielsa will certainly be glad to be able to have Roberts at least on the bench, while the Welshman’s return to fitness can act as the fire Bamford needs to push him back into scoring regularly.
Bamford hit a seven-game drought in front of the net during our trip to the KCOM Stadium last month, but was able to fire home his 13th of the term against Huddersfield a week after Roberts struck his brace.
In other Leeds United news, the club are said to be ready to sign an emerging talent expected to become a first-team mainstay.