This article is part of Football FanCast’s Opinion series, which provides analysis, insight and opinion on any issue within the beautiful game, from Paul Pogba’s haircuts to League Two relegation battles…
Illan Meslier arrived in the summer as a rather understated signing, one that went under the radar as Leeds also landed Eddie Nketiah towards deadline day.
Kiko Casilla has made the number one spot his own and Meslier hasn’t featured for the senior team whatsoever.
He didn’t even earn a place in the Carabao Cup as he’s been restricted to outings for Carlos Corberan’s U23 side. Saving two penalties earlier in the season, he’s done all he can to make a statement to Bielsa.
However, he doesn’t seem to be listening and in recent times Kamil Miazek has even been preferred on the bench because of Leeds’ loan quota.
But his role in the side could change if Casilla is found guilty of racially abusing Jonathan Leko. The goalkeeper has been charged and could face at worst a 12 game ban.
That would surely put Meslier at the top of the pecking order but a January addition could soon swipe away that idea.
The People, via Leeds Live, have recently linked Leeds with a move for Birmingham stopper David Stockdale.
Now aged 34, he was once one of the better men between the sticks in the division, helping Brighton to secure promotion. However, since then he’s been stuck behind the calamitous Lee Camp this term at St Andrew’s.
Leeds could offer him a fresh start and bringing in an experienced keeper would certainly benefit the Whites if Casilla is banned.
But what sort of message does it send out to Meslier if the former Fulham man walks through the door? There can only be one answer, a concerning one.
The £4.5m-rated ‘keeper is already struggling to make an impact and the last thing he needs is someone else bumping him down the pecking order.
Leeds have an option to buy him next summer but the possibility of that feels remote given he’s not played a single minute.
Signing Stockdale would stink of a lack of faith in Meslier, something that’s incredibly bizarre given he’s performed admirably for the U23s. If Leeds have desires of bringing someone else in, they may as well have just stuck with Miazek last summer, rather than bringing the 19-year-old in on loan.
This would be a rather damning statement from Victor Orta and the senior management team at Elland Road.