Pascal Struijk now needs centre-back chance after Leeds display
Photo by MB Media/Getty Images

Pascal Struijk now needs centre-back chance after Leeds display

On a disappointing day for Leeds United’s defence, Pascal Struijk showed some more promising signs as he, once again, filled in at left-back for Jesse Marsch’s men.

Leeds’ defensive issues will be top of Marsch’s priority list over the World Cup break. The Whites have now conceded 11 goals in their last four games, with four put past Illan Meslier at Tottenham at the weekend.

Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images

None of the defenders covered themselves in glory. But the Whites do not have many options to turn to before the January transfer window opens.

Pascal Struijk the best of the lot on difficult day for Leeds’ defence

One option which perhaps needs looking at is moving Struijk into centre-back.

Photo by MB Media/Getty Images

The Dutchman is the one central defender yet to really get a proper chance at the heart of the backline this season.

That is largely down to Struijk impressing at left-back. Initially, he featured there to cover for the injured Junior Firpo. But he has kept his place since Firpo’s return, with the 26-year-old unable to put much pressure on Struijk.

Leeds do now have another player they can use on the left in Leo Hjelde. And with that, perhaps now is the time to move Struijk into the middle where he is at his best.

Struijk won more tackles than anyone on the pitch against Spurs (five). Meanwhile, Whoscored shows that he won three aerial duels. And actually, no Leeds player completed more key passes.

Of course, Struijk was not flawless. Tottenham had real joy down Leeds’ left flank towards the end of the game. But Marsch does not have many other choices if he wishes to make a change.

Unfortunately, Diego Llorente has had a poor season. And Liam Cooper’s form has been inconsistent.

Struijk has been one of Leeds’ standout performers this season. And he has surely been the club’s best defender – playing out of position.

His statistics at Spurs were still impressive. So perhaps now is the time to move him into the middle and use Hjelde – or Firpo – on the left until the January transfer window is open.

Have something to tell us about this article?
Let us know