Does the link to your sitemap help with search engine optimization?

Ok, of course I know how important it is to have a sitemap and link to it from your own website. That is not my question at all. No, my question is much more complex and fascinating.

But first…

A little background story to my question

I did a competitive analysis for a customer and found that one of their competitors created links to their sitemap.xml file. This prompted me to ask a few questions …

A link to your sitemap would ensure that Google crawls your entire website … maybe …?

Still, wouldn't your robots.tx file or submitting the XML sitemap in Google Search Console do the same thing faster and easier?

Does the external link structure to your sitemap really have any value?

Since this is the first time I've come across it and I don't remember ever reading anything about it anywhere (and I've read a lot of SEO blogs!), I thought I would write a short post and ask, whether someone is there has also been found.

I also hope that someone can give an insight into whether this brings real added value and whether this type of link creation is an advantage.

Thanks a lot!