Gareth Southgate on Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford and the Euros - 'We didn't see any reason to change'

England boss Gareth Southgate has again praised Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford but says he saw no reason to change his forward options for the European Championships.

Tuesday, 25th May 2021, 2:46 pm
MISSED OUT - Leeds United's top goalscorer Patrick Bamford is not among Gareth Southgate's forwards in the provisional England squad for the Euros. Pic: Getty

Both Bamford, who scored 17 goals for the newly-promoted Whites, and already-capped Danny Ings missed out on a place in Southgate's 33-man provisional squad for a training camp in Middlesbrough ahead of the summer's major tournament.

Southgate will name his final squad next week before friendlies against Austria and Romania, with the group stage of the Euros beginning with a game against Croatia on June 13.

Currently Phil Foden, Mason Greenwood, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Jack Grealish, Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford, Bukayo Saka, Jadon Sancho, Raheem Sterling and Ollie Watkins are Southgate's attacking options.

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The national team boss omitted Bamford from his squad in March, admitting the Leeds man was unfortunate given the season he was having. That now appears to have counted against the 27-year-old, along with Ings, for the Euros.

"I think we've probably looked at the squad in March, the basis of this squad we had in March and we were very pleased," said Southgate.

"The forwards we've selected were with us in March. There's Danny [Ings] and Patrick Bamford who have had very good seasons - I've said that before.

"But we didn't see any reason to change those positions from the players that did well for us in the games, the three qualifiers we won in March."

Bamford finished the season with three goals in his final four games, scoring his 17th of the Premier League season on Sunday when he converted a spot-kick at Elland Road in front of 8,000 Whites supporters.

Beyond his goalscoring exploits he has contributed seven assists, led Leeds United's ferocious pressing game from the front and played a huge part in the building of attacks. Whites head coach Marcelo Bielsa makes a point of not offering an opinion on international selection issues but he believes Bamford should be pleased with his efforts in the top flight.

"He's had a season in which he's shone," said the former Argentina and Chile boss.

"I'm sure he will be very positive about the campaign he's had be what may. Everything he's achieved this season is because of the effort and dedication he's put in to show his abilities."