Leeds United: Bailey must keep improving to become first choice, reveals Heckingbottom

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Leeds United manager Paul Heckingbottom believes goalkeeper Bailey Peacock-Farrell must "keep improving" if he is to hold down the number one shirt at Elland Road next season.

The 21-year-old put in a man of the match performance during Saturday's 1-1 draw with Sunderland making three key saves in the closing stages of the game to ensure the Whites came away with a point.

Bailey Peacock-Farrell.

Bailey Peacock-Farrell.

Peacock-Farrell made the step up into the first-team after Heckingbottom decided to drop Felix Weidwald from the starting XI following a number of errors in the United goal. The young stopper has featured in the last six Championship fixtures and has grasped his opportunity to show what he can do.

Heckingbottom admitted he was impressed by his goalkeeper in recent weeks but conceded that he had to keep pushing on if he was to stake a claim to be United's first choice at the start of the next campaign.

"He did well," Heckingbottom told his post-match press conference.

"I was speaking out there that the highlights reel that they show, both goalkeepers will be getting a move after that, there was lots of action for them. Bailey pulled three good saves out at good moments in the game for us.

"When you're going through the game before and you're trying to work out scenarios for how it's going to go we knew once we made that change that the keeper was going to have to perform well and he's done it.

Asked if Peacock-Farrell could be his number one next season Heckingbottom simply replied: "He's got to keep improving."

"He's got to keep pushing and we've already spoke after about one bit of game management where he knew straight away. Whilst we can see that improvement in him we want him to keep going further and improving more."

Sunderland boss Chris Coleman also revealed he was impressed by Peacock-Farrell's performance with one save in particular from an Ashley Fletcher header catching his eye.

"What a save that is," said Coleman.

"Nothing wrong with the header, it's great, on target, it's point blank but it was an incredible save. He looked good and played well."

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