Leeds United secured back-to-back wins in the Premier League for the first time this season on Saturday afternoon, with Jesse Marsch’s side running out 4-3 winners in a dramatic meeting with AFC Bournemouth at Elland Road.
Indeed, with the visitors leading 3-1 with 30 minutes left to play, the Whites’ shock 2-1 victory over Liverpool the week prior was beginning to look like a one-off result rather than the start of a surge up the top flight standings.
However, the introduction of Sam Greenwood on the 54-minute mark proved game-changing for the home side, with the club’s £1.5m signing providing Leeds with the spark they required to get back into the match.
Having been limited to something of a bit-part role in the senior squad so far this season – with the 20-year-old playing just 104 minutes of Premier League football over four appearances prior to Saturday – the England U21 international made a real stake for a starting spot in Marsch’s side in the win over the Cherries.
Indeed, over his 36 minutes on the pitch, the £3.7m-rated midfielder was electric going forwards, enjoying 36 touches of the ball, making three key passes, completing four of his eight attempted crosses and two of his four attempted long balls.
However, it was undoubtedly the £1.3k-per-week talent’s 60th-minute wondergoal that most caught the eye, with the former Arsenal starlet loitering on the edge of the box, picking up Pascal Struijk’s rebounded strike and curling the ball beautifully beyond Mark Travers at the far post – halving Leeds’ deficit in the process.
Rather understandably, the midfielder’s goal earned a significant amount of praise, with James Marshment stating in a post on Twitter:
“The beauty, and uniqueness, of Sam Greenwood’s strike yesterday is that he’s one of the few players in the game who are both left AND right-footed. A very rare breed. Curled home beautifully with his left, but could have done so equally from the other side with his right. Blessed.”
The youngster also played a crucial role in Liam Cooper’s equaliser, delivering an inch-perfect corner to the back post, with the centre-back heading powerfully home to level the scores.
These metrics saw the 20-year-old earn an extremely impressive SofaScore match rating of 8.2 – the best of any player to feature in the match – while Leeds Live’s Beren Cross also awarded the playmaker an eight in his own player ratings, as well as stating of the midfielder’s display:
“A stunning goal and equalising assist. Should not be forgotten in the hype around [Crysencio] Summerville and [Wilfried] Gnonto. Huge quality to pull the game back to Leeds.”
As such, while Greenwood has featured in the top flight for Leeds prior to the Bournemouth win, his outing against the Cherries very much felt like a breakthrough performance for the England youth international, with it appearing as if Victor Orta hit the jackpot when signing the youngster who is now worth 147% more than his £1.5m cost back in the summer of 2020.