Pascal Struijk has told Leeds United’s official website that he has held talks with Belgium manager Roberto Martinez over his international future. The left-footed defender is able to play for Belgium, The Netherlands or Indonesia. But a decision is clearly yet to be made, by Struijk.
Struijk, 21, has been in excellent form for Leeds over the past 12 months. Only breaking into the Leeds side towards the end of the 2019-20 season, Marcelo Bielsa entrusted him to play 30 times last term. He did not look out of place and was even keeping Robin Koch and Liam Cooper out of the side.
With his club future sorted after signing a four-year deal in November 2020, Struijk’s international decision is yet to be made. While he joined Leeds from Dutch side Ajax and has three caps for Netherlands Under-17 side, Belgium could pounce. Martinez has spoke of his talks with Struijk before.
However, a decision is yet to be made with both countries overlooking Struijk for Euro 2020 this summer. Struijk spoke of his admiration for Virgil van Dijk and Matthijs de Ligt – but Belgium’s centre-back options are old. They consist of Thomas Vermaelen, Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld.
What has Leeds ace Struijk said about his international future – amid Martinez talks?
Belgium clearly need him, while Struijk might be edging towards the Netherlands. This is what he said: “I would like to see myself playing at the same level as Virgil van Dijk, Matthijs de Ligt, Frenkie de Jong, all the players that came from not just Ajax, but the dutch players.
“I want to make sure that I work hard, and get to their level. If Holland is interested, but Belgium is always an option for me. I spoke with their manager, and it gives me possibilities to think about. I think everyone has their own path and everyone has their own way. I’m trying to find mine.”