Beren Cross has dropped an update on Leeds United’s bid to bring a new goalkeeper to Elland Road this summer.
In a recent article for Leeds Live, the journalist revealed that, following a number of reports linking Victor Orta with a move for a backup goalkeeper this summer, after Kristoffer Klaesson picked up an injury in a behind-closed-doors friendly last Saturday, the Spaniard has now escalated his pursuit of a new shot-stopper.
Cross went on to state that the Whites’ pursuit of an experienced number two stretches back to January, however, following the Norway U21 international’s knock, the club could now bring in a new goalkeeper by the end of next week.
That ‘keeper could well be Joel Robles, who according to reports, Leeds are ‘set’ to sign.
Considering the fact that Leeds’ 2022/23 Premier League campaign kicks off in a little under two days, and with the club owning, at present, just one fit senior goalkeeper in the shape of Illan Meslier, Cross’ claim that Orta could be set to land a new ‘keeper as the Whites’ seventh signing this summer is sure to come as a big relief for Jesse Marsch.
While it is undeniable that Meslier is a fantastic young shot-stopper, when looking at the 22-year-old’s form last season, it is evident that Leeds would very much benefit from an experienced option as a backup to the France U21 international – both in order to help the youngster continue his development and to give Marsch ample cover between the sticks.
Indeed, over his 38 Premier League appearances in 2021/22, the £18m-rated talent kept just five clean sheets and conceded a whopping 79 goals – the second-most in the top flight – at an average of 2.1-per-game – returns which would disappoint any goalkeeper in the league, let alone a 22-year-old who is still learning the ropes in England.
Furthermore, the former Leeds number one, Paul Robinson, quite clearly believes that the Whites could do with an old goalkeeping head in their ranks next term, stating in an interview with MOT Leeds News back in June:
“Illan Meslier has been excellent and I think he’s the out-and-out number one simply because he’s got no competition. Next season, if he gets injured or suspended, they’ve got no quality number two.
“And if he has a dip in form – which will happen at some point – the manager’s got no choice but to stick with him and ride it out because he hasn’t got a good enough number two to put in.
“They have to go for a quality one. If you look around the Premier League, the other teams have quality goalkeepers. Everyone carries a top-quality number two who can do the job.”
As such, the news that Leeds could welcome a new goalkeeper before the end of next week is sure to come as a huge boost to Marsch, especially when considering just how important reducing the number of goals the Whites concede will be to the club securing a more respectable league finish in 2022/23.