22 March 2021

Tyler Roberts targets consistency for Leeds to earn place in Wales’ Euros squad

22 March 2021

Leeds forward Tyler Roberts is determined to show the quality to win a place on Wales’ Euro 2020 plane and believes Marcelo Bielsa will help him get there.

Roberts had to wait for his chance with Leeds boss Bielsa naming him among the substitutes more often than not earlier in the Premier League campaign.

But the 22-year-old has started the last six Leeds games and produced some impressive form in the number 10 role behind centre-forward Patrick Bamford.

“I’ve always got things to prove,” Roberts said when asked if he felt he had done enough to make Wales’ squad for this summer’s delayed European Championship.

“I’m my harshest critic after every game, I’m never happy. I always feel like I’ve got more to give and consistency right now is the main thing.

“Trying to stay in the team at club level and put in the performances that will get me on that plane.”

Roberts joined Leeds from West Brom in January 2018 but injury prevented him from making his debut that season.

Bielsa arrived at Elland Road the following June and masterminded the Yorkshire’s club return to the Premier League last summer.

“He’s been a teacher more than a coach,” Roberts said.

“He’s taught me so much about the game and what I need to improve. Parts of my game that I’ve never looked at before.

“It’s been a great experience and I feel like I’ve matured as a player.

“It’s been a crazy few years but I’ve definitely improved a lot.

“It’s great to be getting the game time. I definitely needed the run of games and I just feel that I am getting stronger and fitter each game.

“Patience has been the key this season. The season before was a bit stop-start with some niggly injuries, but now I’ve been injury-free and have been waiting for my chance.”

Skipper Gareth Bale, Daniel James and Cardiff’s in-form spearhead Kieffer Moore might be the expected Wales front three for their opening 2022 World Cup qualifier in Belgium on Wednesday.

But Roberts, who sees himself as a number nine rather than a number 10, said: “I’m happy where my fitness levels are at the moment and I’m raring to represent Wales again.

“I know the history we’ve got with Belgium and we can take confidence from that.

“But we also had a good Euro qualifying campaign and we can push for the World Cup now.”

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