Pascal Struijk uploaded a message on Instagram after Leeds United’s impressive win against Aston Villa on Friday night and he vowed to learn from it, after he was substituted off just 21 minutes into the game.
Whites boss Marcelo Bielsa is no stranger to making bold decisions and he decided to withdraw the 21-year-old halfway through the first-half.
The youngster had already earned a yellow card for a fierce challenge on Villa captain Jack Grealish and was treading a fine line after some mistimed tackles that followed.
He is a left-footed centre-back by trade that impressed in the previous game against Wolverhampton Wanderers, but he was asked to step into midfield against Villa due to the absence of Kalvin Phillips.
Bielsa’s side ended up 3-0 winners on Friday night at Villa Park, with striker Patrick Bamford netting a second-half hat-trick to continue his rich vein of form.
Struijk showed his maturity after the game with his post on social media:
Struijk has no reason to be concerned after his early withdrawal against Villa, as two years ago there is the example of the exact same thing happening to Phillips against Swansea City.
Struijk showed his versatility by dropping into the centre of the park, but the performance of his substitute replacement Jamie Shackleton means he could have a tough job trying to nail down a starting position during the injury absence of Phillips.
It’s easy to overlook that it was only Struijk’s ninth first-team appearance in a Leeds shirt and he’s definitely an upcoming talent with a big future.