It only seems like last week that Jack Harrison’s strike beat Brentford and secured Leeds United’s Premier League status – the scenes, the relief, Raphinha crawling the length of the pitch. But several players have already been back in action with their national teams.
That’s because the winter World Cup in Qatar later this year has forced Nations League football into the early summer slot, while qualification for the 2023 under-21 European Championship continues as well.
Leeds had five players – plus one likely signing – represent their country on Friday, with Charlie Cresswell, Illan Meslier, Leo Hjelde, Kristoffer Klaesson, Charlie Allen and Rasmus Kristensen all featuring in some respect.
Here’s a round up of how they all got on.
Imminent arrival Rasmus Kristensen came off the bench for Denmark as they came back in dramatic fashion to beat France in their Nations League group.
Les Bleus took the lead through Karim Benzema before Kristensen came on at 1-0 down in the 60th minute.
Then two goals from fellow substitute Andreas Cornelius – the winner in the 88th minute – turned the tie on its head and gave Kristensen and Denmark a memorable win over the world champions.
Amid speculation that the centre-back might be loaned out this season, Charlie Cresswell played the full 90 minutes as England under-21s beat Czech Republic in their European Championship qualifying group.
Arsenal’s Emile Smith-Rowe and Aston Villa’s Jacob Ramsey scored England’s goals before a late consolation courtesy of Slavia Prague’s Daniel Fila.
Cresswell played his part in a solid defence that conceded only thanks to a wondergoal, taking England top of Group G with two games in hand.
The 22-year-old started for France’s under-21s and kept a clean sheet as they beat Serbia 2-0 in Grenoble.
Nice duo Khéphren Thuram-Ulien and Amine Gouiri scored for Les Bleus, with Meslier rarely tested by a far inferior Serbian side.
He and France are now six points clear at the top of their group, having played a game more than Ukraine.
Kristoffer Klaesson/Leo Hjelde
The Norwegian under-21 duo both started as their side won a crucial match 3-2 against top of the table Croatia.
Defeat looked to be on the cards for the Whites pair before a 91st-minute equaliser and then a dramatic 95th-minute winner from defender Jorgen Strand Larsen.
The win keeps Norway in touching distance of the top, a point off with a game in hand.
The 18-year-old had an afternoon to forget with his Northern Ireland under-21s side who were battered 6-0 by Spain.
The midfielder started for his country and was brought off around the hour mark.