Published: Y Clwb Pel-Droed
Wales forward Tyler Roberts says he is keen to break his duck on the international stage.
Roberts has played 11 times for Wales so far, and has yet to open his scoring account for his country.
The versatile Leeds United youngster has been a regular in Marcelo Bielsa’s side, having played 18 times in the Premier League so far this season.
Finding the back of the net more often is something Roberts hopes he can develop.
‘’I think that’s [scoring more goals] something I need to add to my game and get into more positions to score those goals,’’ he explained.
‘’It’s been frustrating, obviously not scoring yet, and I’m kind of being hard on myself for not scoring but I have faith it will happen.’’
‘’I was never really too harsh on myself when I was younger, I just enjoyed playing football, but now it’s a lot more serious and I have to study and constantly grow.
‘’There’s always things in my game that I pick up and I think I should be doing better, so it’s kind of always doing that and analysing myself but taking the positives as well and having that balance.’’
Playing at club level with Patrick Bamford – who has 14 league goals this season – has helped Roberts understand the mentality behind goal scoring.
‘’The kind of mindset that goal scorers do have and it’s something I feel like I’ve got now,’’ he claimed.
‘’I feel like the goals are definitely going to come. I think I can say I’ve been unlucky with a few of the VAR [decisions], but that’s football right now and I’m still positive that I’ll get a few goals in the Premier League before the end of the season, and then help Wales as well.’’
Similarly to Wales captain Gareth Bale, Roberts’ versatility means he’s played in an array of different positions in his early career.
‘’He’s [Bale] played a lot of positions and it’s something that you have to do. No matter where you’re playing, you have to be making an impact, you have to be a threat and, throughout his career, he’s definitely been a threat, so he’s a great person to play with and learn off.’’
The 22-year-old receives criticism from family and friends, but he believes it helps him progress as a player.
‘’I’m quite lucky to be fair; I have a good, tight circle. I’ve got my dad that played a bit when he was younger, my mum that just wants me to enjoy the game, my agent is amazing – Dean Sturridge- obviously he played a lot when he was fitter, and he’s kind of the main person that will point things out in my game to improve on.’’
‘’It’s a good mixture, but they all mean well and it’s out of love so they’re the people that I listen to. Nowadays, there’s a lot of social media and stuff, but they’re the only people that I really listen to.’’
Roberts is also confident Wales have what it takes to qualify for their first World Cup since 1958.
‘’Nothing will be talked about the safety net, that’s not the kind of mentality that we have. We want to go out and win games and show our qualities, so that’s what we’re all looking forward to and excited to try and get to a World Cup. It would be a massive thing for the country, and we’re confident that we can do it.’’