London ball

Roberts aims to put injury worries behind him

Tyler Roberts admits his early days at QPR were frustrating but he is now hoping to cement his place in the starting lineup.

The 23-year-old scored his first league goal for the club in a 2-1 win at Bristol City on Saturday and completed 90 minutes for the first time since December last year.

Roberts, who joined Leeds on loan in July with an option in place to make the move permanent at the end of the campaign, has struggled with fitness since arriving after suffering a serious thigh injury last March. which disrupted his pre-season.

He found the net midway through the first half at Ashton Gate when he met Kenneth Paal’s cross at the far post to head home.

“You always have a few worries when you have a serious injury, so it’s been a bit of a stop-start since I’ve been here,” Roberts said.

“That’s probably the worst thing for me because I’m someone who just wants to go – physios will tell you that.

“I just asked them to do more but I’m glad I got over that and that was my first 90 minutes for God knows how long.

“Coaches here keep telling me to get into the box. As a striker, that’s where you’ll get the most goals.

“It’s something I need to improve on and the game has proven to me that by just getting in there you’ll get those catches.

“It’s the kind of chances you need for your first goal, no time to think about it, I knew when Chrissy (Willock) got it there would be a shot or an assist coming.

“So when he rolled it to Kenneth, I know he has the quality to pick that space.”

“It’s great when you have players like him, Ethan (Laird) and Ilias (chairman) and you know if you get in the box the ball will come.”

As well as scoring what turned out to be the decisive goal, Roberts’ defensive work was important in wrapping up the win – a side of his game that endeared him to former Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa.

However, following the Argentine’s departure last February, the former West Brom man’s days at Elland Road were numbered under Jesse Marsch, who told him he was not part of his plans.

“I had been injured as soon as the new manager arrived, so he hadn’t really seen me play,” Roberts said.

“Throughout the summer, with the way we ended last season, they were always going to sign new players and give the manager his own transfer window.

“I was just one of the fringe players. I was not expelled. It was a mutual agreement to get my games and prove to people that I can stay fit and score goals.

Roberts also hopes his switch to the W12 will help secure his place in Wales’ squad for next month’s World Cup.

“It’s obviously a big thing for any player in the summer transfer window – you have to be there to play or you risk missing out on World Cup selection,” he said. declared.