By Mark Smith

27th Jan, 2021 | 4:00pm

'Different class' - Liam Cooper awestruck by bit-part Leeds player in win v Newcastle

Leeds United battled their way to an impressive 2-1 victory against Newcastle on Wednesday evening in the Premier League.

They didn’t do it the easy way though, with Raphinha and Jack Harrison scoring either side of Miguel Almiron at St James’ Park.

Marcelo Bielsa didn’t hold back, dropping Mateusz Klich and also dragging Patrick Bamford off the pitch midway through the second half.

One decision was forced upon Bielsa.

Diego Llorente finally made his full debut for the Whites, but it only lasted a matter of minutes, much to our dismay while watching.

The Spaniard was forced off with a fresh hamstring problem, and it was down to Pascal Struijk to step up off the bench once again.

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The Dutch colossus starred again and stood tall alongside Liam Cooper to help his side to one of their toughest wins of the season so far.

His captain, Cooper was left awestruck with his performance, labelling him “different class” on his personal Instagram account after the clash.

The 21-year-old was solid at St James’ Park.

Marking Callum Wilson, the defender won five aerial duels and made an impressive seven clearances according to WhoScored – he also won 100% of his battles in the air.

Struijk couldn’t have imagined to have played such a massive role in Leeds’ return to the Premier League this season.

The defender has already made eight starts in the Premier League, already four times more than last season, and that is set to keep growing with Llorente presumably out injured yet again.

In other Leeds United news, Steve McManaman awestruck by ‘Sublime’ ace v Newcastle

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