Former Leeds keeper recommends surprise Meslier replacement

Toby Bowles
Meslier F365 Leeds

Former Leeds United goalkeeper Paul Robinson feels the club should look to recruit another number one in the summer to provide competition for the blundering Illan Meslier.

Meslier, whose position has been under scrutiny after three errors in the 4-2 defeat to Arsenal, has the full backing of his manager, Marcelo Bielsa, but has failed to inspire confidence in a back four that has conceded the second-most goals in the Premier League this season.

This has raised the possibility of Leeds going out into the market to find a replacement, and Robinson earmarks Aston Villa’s Tom Heaton as an ideal candidate.

After suffering a cruciate ligament injury last season, Heaton has played second fiddle to Emiliano Martinez this campaign, but Robinson ranks him highly.


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“I’d love to see them go and sign Tom Heaton in the summer,” he told MOT Leeds. “I think he would be a great signing for Leeds.

“He’s back from injury and one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League in my opinion.

“He’s going to really struggle to get back in the Aston Villa side the way Martinez is playing. That’s something he’s not going to be happy with at his age, he’ll want to be playing.

“I think there’s an opportunity for him to come to Leeds. It would be a great move for both parties.

“If Meslier plays well between now and the end of the season, he’d keep the gloves but Heaton would provide really strong competition.”

The goalkeeper position isn’t the only area Leeds will be looking to strengthen in, according to journalist Phil Hay. Back-up for Kalvin Phillips is thought to be top of the agenda, as is cover for Mateusz Klich.

“I wouldn’t be entirely surprised if it wasn’t two,” Hay said on the Phil Hay Show podcast.

“They will certainly go looking for someone who can provide cover for (Kalvin) Phillips and I think that will be a younger option.

“I think there will be attention paid to higher up the pitch, the more forward midfield positions.”

He added: “Two midfielders would make sense. One in the Phillips area and one in the (Mateusz) Klich area. They feel like the two positions that are under-resourced.”