The most surprising name on the teamsheet for Leeds’ latest under-23 clash was Kalvin Phillips.
After being sent off in the defeat to Nottingham Forest, the midfielder is serving a three-match suspension. Nevertheless, it may have taken some aback to see Carlos Corberan select him for the clash with Crewe on Monday.
Phillips would have been forgiven for wanting to recharge his batteries. He is going to be a key player during the second-half of the season, so a rest may be beneficial.
But his involvement arguably said everything about the current squad’s attitude.
Phillips not only played in the 2-0 win, but he really shone in the middle of the park. He seemed to treat the game as one that was almost as important as any first-team fixture.
It is difficult to imagine that he would have had any hesitation about the idea of playing for the under-23s. Instead, he probably relished the opportunity.
While he is suspended, Phillips appears determined to remain match fit.
That will boost his chances of hitting the ground running upon his return. And having such an important first-team player feature for the under-23s can only help increase the unity that exists between the various squads at Elland Road.