The uncertainty over the conclusion of the current campaign is understandably agonizing for the Leeds United fans who have been waiting for years to reclaim a top-flight status. They were leading the Championship standings prior to the postponement of the game in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, but have to fix a few problems now even if the season resumes within the next couple of months.
The Whites roped in Kiko Casilla from Real Madrid to sort out their frailty between the sticks. But the Spaniard’s high-profile errors shattered Leeds United’s promotion hopes a year ago and is now serving an eight-game ban for racially abusing Charlton’s Jonathan Leko. But his suspension helped Illan Meslier grab the long-awaited league debut since completing a summer loan from French side FC Lorient.
Casilla’s Suspension: A Blessing In Disguise?
The 20-year-old took little time to impress though as he grabbed successive clean sheets against Hull City and Huddersfield Town. He was supposed to keep hold of the starting role for weeks, but the unforeseen delay has now cast doubts over his Leeds future with the current deal set to expire on June 30.
The Whites have an option to make the move permanent within that period, but the unpredictability of the post-pandemic period is refraining them from doing so. The season won’t be over by the end of June even if the game returns at some stage later this year and the talks are ongoing for all the loan stars who have made an impact at the Elland Road.
Why Leeds United Must Retain Their Loan Stars
According to club’s Chief Executive Angus Kinnear, they have already opened talks with the parent outfits urging to retain the likes of Meslier, Ben White, Jack Harrison and Jean-Kevin Augustin beyond the contracted period.
“What I have been really encouraged by is the collegiate way that all of football is trying to work to work together to solve these issues.
“We think there is a collective intent to find solutions, and I don’t think it is beyond the wit of man that if we work together, we can find those solutions to complete the season, even if it goes beyond June 30th.”
Kinnear told Sky Sports’ The Football Show (as reported by Leeds Live) which must be a significant boost amid all the stress and anxiety.
Marcelo Bielsa’s influence in West Yorkshire is enormous, but the Whites must win a few more games to ensure direct promotion. The retention of Meslier would be extremely crucial to avoid another late heartbreak similar to the previous term.