Pascal Struijk has missed only two league matches for Leeds United since coming off the bench in his side’s 6-2 defeat at the hands of Manchester United in December.
The defender’s performances for the Whites have convinced Roberto Martínez to hand him an opportunity with Belgium.
Having represented the Netherlands at youth level, he is yet to receive a call up from their first team. Marcelo Bielsa’s man was born near Antwerp and this makes the centre-back eligible to represent De Rode Duivels.
In March, the 21-year-old’s agent said his client needed more time to make a decision on which country he plans on to represent.
De Telegraaf have now interviewed the centre-back and asked whether he expects to be included in Frank de Boer’s list for Euro 2020.
Responding to that, Struijk said: “I know that I am being followed seriously. Every week I show that I can perform in the strongest competition in the world. It is up to the national coach to determine who will be called up.
“The KNVB is in contact with my management [Forza Sports Group]. I myself have not spoken with the national coach yet. I did call Erwin van de Looi [Netherlands U21 coach] a number of times before the group stage of the European Championship with Jong Oranje.”
The Leeds player also explained what he could offer to the Netherlands, if De Boer picks him for the summer’s UEFA tournament.
“I know that the position where I play [left central defender] is a very interesting one in today’s football. I think I am a complete player: physically strong and good on the ball,” he explained.
“In addition, I can also work in midfield. At Leeds I have played in the No.6 position several times this season. So, I can be deployed in multiple positions and in multiple systems.”
Despite confirming contact with KNVB [the Dutch football association], Struijk has not closed the door on representing Belgium.
“As you know, my big goal is to play for the first team. That is also the reason that I did not want to opt for Jong Oranje [the Netherlands U21] before. Because then I may not be able to represent Belgium anymore. I still have this position at the moment,” Struijk added.
“It’s about the bigger picture. What is best for my career in the long term rather than the short term.
“Roberto Martínez knows English football well. In addition to being national coach, he is also the technical director of the KBVB. During our conversation it turned out that he knew me very well as a player.
“He’s been following me since I started playing regularly at Leeds United under 23. Of course, it’s a compliment that he would like me to play for Belgium and call me personally.”
When further quizzed if playing for Belgium ‘really an option?’, the Leeds United said: “We are still working on the Belgian passport procedure. This is somewhat delayed due to the corona crisis. For me it is about which bond gives me the best feeling, that they really want to work with me. And where I can develop myself well.
“There is something to be said for both options. They are of course also two beautiful football countries. They both have very strong advantages. I would be honoured to represent either of them.
“I can only have a preference if there is really a choice between both countries. That choice is not yet available. I must first be selected by one of the two countries.”