Leeds United managing director Angus Kinnear has described the thought process behind summer signing Kristoffer Klaesson.
It was a case of one in, one out this summer when it came to the goalkeeping department, with the club letting go of veteran Kiko Casilla as he left for Spanish side Elche on a season-long loan, with the 20-year-old Norwegian making the move to Elland Road on a four-year permanent deal, where he will look to compete with Illan Meslier for the starting role between the sticks.
Is Kristoffer Klaesson a shrewd signing for Leeds?
And speaking about the deal on The Square Ball podcast, Kinnear revealed that their interest in Klaesson goes back beyond this summer, and was actually being considered over a move to Elland Road back in 2019 before Meslier moved to the club on loan from Lorient:
“In terms of Klaesson, he was actually a goalkeeper who Victor presented to Marcelo and the board at the same time as Illan, and he was rated as highly as Illan by Victor and the scouts. So we’re very excited to have him, we think he’s a great long-term prospect.”
TIF Thoughts on Angus Kinnear’s comments about Kristoffer Klaesson and Leeds United…
It is going to be interesting to see how the battle plays out between the two goalkeepers, especially with both of them having got regular minutes for their respective sides over the past few years. Klaesson made 57 appearances for his former side Valerenga whilst Meslier was the undisputed No 1 for Marcelo Bielsa’s men last season.
So it’s not as if either of them are already going into the season having been a backup in previous campaigns, so one of them could very well end up being left disappointed to be out of the starting eleven when the season kicks off this weekend.
And with both of them likely to have the desire to be first-choice rather than accepting being a replacement, that should spur the two ‘keepers on and push each other to form a pretty decent tandem for Bielsa to choose from.