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Can Matt Smith fill the boots left by departed Leeds star?

The 25-year-old striker must shoulder the goalscoring responsibility left by the departure of Ross McCormack.

The hulking forward has been with Leeds since the beginning of last season, following a move from Oldham Athletic with whom he raised his profile with four FA Cup goals netted against Liverpool and Everton.

Despite his impressive displays against Premier League opposition, the former Non-League striker managed to score just nine goals in 62 games for Oldham, although this less-than-impressive record did not stop Leeds United securing his services following the ending of his contract in 2013.

Whilst Ross McCormack grabbed the headlines last season - being named the Championship top scorer at the close of the season - it was Smith who quietly impressed, netting 12 times and registering six assists in 39 Championship games. He was voted Community Player of the Year at Elland Road, and was only the second player - behind McCormack - to register more than 10 goals.

With the departure of McCormack to Fulham this summer, for a reported record £11 million fee, Smith would have been seen as the direct replacement for the 28-goal man.

Despite using physicality rather than finesse to score goals, Smith offers the same goalscoring threat as McCormack, with the added ability of being able to hold up the ball better than his former teammate. He was dispossessed more than 100 times fewer than McCormack last season, and, whilst he had fewer shots per game than the Scottish international, he had a better conversion rate when he did manage to shoot.

For all his abilities, he could only start on the bench for the opening day defeat to Millwall - with new signing Souleymane Doukara leading the line. With Doukara flattering to deceive, it was Smith who entered the field with half an hour remaining and carried on where he finished last season.

Despite failing to score, he registered two shots - whilst Doukara did not manage one - and won 90% of his aerial battles. A new dynamism was added to the Whites' play following his arrival, and many are calling for him to lead the line against Middlesbrough next weekend.

The huge goalscoring talent that is McCormack has left a gaping hole in the strikeforce of Leeds United, and there is no direct replacement for the abilities he brought to Elland Road. However, if Smith is allowed a run of games, he may be able to use his own talents to benefit not only his goalscoring abilities, but also the promotion chances of the former English giants.

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