Marcelo Bielsa lifts lid on Leeds United's capture of FC Lorient goalkeeper Illan Meslier

Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa has revealed that goalkeeper coach Marcos Abad played a key role in bringing Illan Meslier to the club.

Friday, 9th August 2019, 4:44 pm
Leeds United loanee Illan Meslier.

The Whites unveiled the loan signing of the highly-rated 19-year-old from Ligue 2 outfit FC Lorient on transfer deadline day.

Meslier was subject of interest from Monaco last season while Premier League side Chelsea had also been keeping tabs on the stopper.

Leeds, though, added to their goalkeeper ranks by landing the France youth international on a season-long loan with an option to buy following the departure of Bailey Peacock-Farrell to Premier League side Burnley.

"Illan Meslier is a goalkeeper Marcos Abad has reviewed a lot of videos of," Bielsa revealed.

Sign up to our Leeds United newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

"I knew him too, but the opinion now which is the right one, is of Marcos and not mine.

"In some players I have more analysis, but in other players I trust in recommendations I receive. I am not saying I do not control the players (that come in), but I give importance to better placed opinions on the players.

"For example, Ben White. He's a player who arrived to the club because Victor Orta was thinking about him. In the previous season, Victor insisted a lot on bringing White here.

"We had other players to play in this position. Now, Victor is pleased the player arrived. This is why for some players I trust other recommendations.

"This is why Illan came from Marcos' opinion and why Ben White came from Victor Orta's opinion."

Asked whether Meslier could compete with Kiko Casilla straight away following his move, he added: "Talking about the goalkeepers, the right thing is not to think about the way like you did the question because the goalkeeper who is in the first XI, for different reasons, can't stop to be the first XI goalkeeper.

"Then, the goalkeeper who is on the bench sometimes moves to be the first goalkeeper. This can happen with the third goalkeeper too because if the second goalkeeper moves to be the first, the third goalkeeper can be the second one.

"Then he is understanding the demands of being the second goalkeeper. For this reason, the three goalkeepers have to be like first XI goalkeepers.

"Of course, there are different levels at the beginning, this is the reason for your question. But I am giving you my criteria moving forward."