West Ham United v Leeds United: The Emirates FA Cup Third Round
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Luke Ayling uses one word to sum up Leeds youngster's display on Instagram

The likes of Luke Ayling and Junior Firpo were amongst those to laud Leo Hjelde on Instagram after the Leeds United starlet’s performance against West Ham on Sunday.

Hjelde made his senior debut for the Whites last week as Marcelo Bielsa’s side were knocked out of the FA Cup. And the second trip in eight days to the London Stadium brought another landmark appearance for the 18-year-old.

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Injuries to Adam Forshaw and Junior Firpo during the first-half on Sunday prompted Bielsa to bring on Hjelde and Lewis Bate.

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Bate’s performance was lauded as he impressed before coming off himself during the second-half. Meanwhile, Hjelde proved a further point after shining up against Michail Antonio in the cup defeat.

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The teenager featured at centre-back in that tie, whereas he came in at left-back on Sunday.

He has played in both roles for the under-23s since arriving from Celtic. And it will be exciting to see where his long-term future at Elland Road lies.

One thing that is for sure, is that Hjelde is definitely set for an incredibly bright career at Leeds. Once again, he looked assured up against the likes of Jarrod Bowen and Vladimir Coufal.

And he clearly managed to impress a number of teammates. Hjelde took to Instagram following the game to express his delight at making his Premier League bow. And he was lauded by several Leeds stars, with Ayling labelling his performance ‘outstanding’…

Leo Hjelde amongst those to emerge as shining light in difficult period for Leeds

Leeds clearly would have rather got through the season largely unscathed on the injury front. Certainly, they have been desperately unlucky. And injuries have hit them harder than most in the Premier League.

However, with a couple of wins under their belt, there are positives emerging. And Hjelde proving that he is good enough for the top-flight is clearly one of those positives for Leeds.

Like Pascal Struijk before him, the Norwegian appears to be well on his way towards grasping his opportunity with both hands. And it is difficult to imagine the summer signing being an under-23 regular again anytime soon.

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