Leeds United’s decision to sell Kasper Schmeichel to Leicester back in the summer of 2011 must surely go down as one of the biggest blunders in the club’s recent history.
Reports claimed that Leeds sold Schmeichel for less than £1m, with then boss Simon Grayson making it clear that the call to sell the Denmark international was one that was in the “best interests” of the Whites, and that it was the “right deal for the club”.
It was suggested by the manager himself that the goalkeeping position was an area he wanted to strengthen that summer, and wanted to sign another senior shot-stopper to follow in the footsteps of Paul Rachubka’s arrival from Blackpool.
Speaking after a move to the Foxes was confirmed, Schmeichel let it be known that the decision for him to leave Elland Road was taken out of his hands, and that it was well and truly against his wishes.
He said at the time: “I want to put on record that I have never asked to leave the Leeds United, nor did I reject an offer for a new contract, since one was never put to me. I was enjoying being a Leeds United player and was looking forward to winning promotion this season with the club.
“I have spoken to the manager Simon Grayson and he has made it clear to me, that, in spite of having played well for him, this is something he believes is a good deal for Leeds United. I have been put in a very difficult situation and will spend some time considering my options for my future.”
Since then, Schmeichel of course has developed into a Premier League stalwart, having earned promotion to the top-flight with Leicester and being part of that now historic side that clinched the title against all odds in 2016.
Considering that Leeds pocketed less than a £1m – absolute peanuts both in today’s market and even back in 2011 – it’s surely a shocking call that the Whites must still regret even to this day given how Schmeichel has progressed at the King Power Stadium.
Leeds just weren’t able to see the kind of potential in Schmeichel that Leicester did, and it’s the Foxes who have benefitted the most.