Photo by Angelo Blankespoor/Soccrates/Getty Images

Watching Gyrano Kerk skew, slice and slam three gilt-edge chances wide of the mark during Utrecht’s 4-0 thrashing of Sparta Rotterdam last week, it was impossible not to think the former Leeds United target and one of the Eredivisie’s most exciting yet exasperating talents had gone backwards.  

With 11 goals and 12 assists during a fabulous 2019/20, Kerk appeared to have put that wasteful streak behind him, finally supplementing his searing pace and exceptional movement with some much-needed end product.

The 2020/21 campaign was more of a struggle – although not to the extent Leeds United were scampering for the hills.

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Marcelo Bielsa is the master when it comes to helping players realise their potential and he obviously saw something special in Kerk. 

According to The Mirror (27 September, page 74), Leeds were willing to pay £10 million for the Amsterdam-born forward during the final few days of the 2020 summer transfer window. 

The Yorkshire giants would bring in Raphinha instead, however.

Photo by Robin Jones/Getty Images

And while one has gone from strength to strength during the past 11 months, the other must be wondering whether a golden opportunity has slipped through his fingers as he struggles to recapture his explosive 2019 form.

Has Gyrano Kerk missed his Leeds United chance?

“Of course, (the rumours) got into my head. I would be lying if I said it wasn’t the case,” Kerk would later admit.  

According to Voetbal International, Utrecht may be willing to accept bids in the region of just £2.5 million to £3.5 million these days.

That, in itself, is a reflection of how things have gone for a man who went from frustrating to fearsome and all the way back to frustrating again. 

Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

In other news, Newcastle hold talks with ‘impressive’ £16m star, he dreams of PL transfer