Leeds were beaten 1-0 by the Potters at the Bet365 Stadium as second half substitute Bamford was made to rue his penalty miss. The one-cap England striker blazed his spot kick over the crossbar, squandering a golden opportunity to put Leeds in the driving seat and on course for a fourth straight Championship victory.
Instead, the Whites left Staffordshire with nothing and their tails between their legs, having lost out to a subsequent Pascal Struijk own goal, conceding at a set-piece with only ten minutes of the game remaining.
Stoke boss Neil said in his post-match press conference he believed Bamford’s miss swung the game in the home side’s favour, lifting the crowd and his players, spurring them on to a second consecutive win on home turf.
“I thought it was more than a battling performance,” Neil said. “There were good spells in the first half when we used the ball really well. We had two or three good opportunities.
“Look at the subs they managed to bring on late in the game. I’ve watched them a lot this season and they’ve got better.
“We know how strong they are. I thought we pressed great. We had good spells on the ball, with some sloppy moments.
“I think they got a let off with a penalty, that rode in their favour. That [the miss] blew the roof off with the fans and the players got a lift from that,” he added.
Leeds remain third in the Championship table but trail second place Ipswich Town by nine points. The Tractor Boys also have a game in hand. Leicester City top the table with 36 points from 13 games.