Ex-Leeds United goalkeeper Paul Robinson has shared his concerns ahead of the club’s return to Premier League action with Illan Meslier a doubt.
Reporter Phil Hay stated that Whites shot-stopper Meslier is currently suffering from glandular fever and could miss their clash against Manchester City on 28th December.
Speaking to MOT Leeds News, Robinson stated his ‘worry’ over potential stand-in Joel Robles playing for the club in the long term, having not consistently played at a top level.
Robinson said: “The worry is the length of time Robles hasn’t consistently played at a top level.
“He has played at the top level and we know that he can do it.
“I wouldn’t have too much of a worry about him on a short-term basis, but long-term, if it was to be Meslier being out for months, there may be an issue.
“We won’t know for sure until we see what Robles can do.
“I don’t think it’s a big problem against Manchester City, and it’s a phrase I hate because no game is a free hit when you’re Leeds United, but if they get points, it’ll be surprising.
“It’ll be one of those games where if you get beaten, it’ll be understandable. If Meslier is to miss that game, it’s not as bad as him missing one against a relegation rival.
“I can’t phrase it another way and I hate to say it, but it’s a free hit for Leeds so regardless of who they field, if Robles comes in and does well, then they’ve got away with it.”
“If they don’t and he concedes goals, we were expecting it with Man City.”
TIF Thoughts on Paul Robinson’s comments…
We believe that Robinson is underestimating Robles as far as his experience is concerned. Meslier is clearly the No 1 for Leeds, but the Spaniard is pretty experienced.
Most of Robles’ game time has come for Real Betis, making 78 appearances in all competitions. Furthermore, the 32-year-old has played 65 times for Everton between 2013 and 2018. So should Robles have to fill in on a longer-term basis, we believe he would be sufficient cover.
He joined the club last summer from Betis and has only made one appearance in the Carabao Cup so far.
Therefore, Meslier is undoubtedly the better option in between the sticks, as he’s played 103 times for Leeds in all competitions. In addition, the Frenchman has been a great shot-stopper so far this season, making 44 Premier League saves. Only eight ‘keepers in England’s top flight have a higher tally than Meslier.
Leeds fans will be hoping that the illness suffered by Meslier is nothing too severe and that he’ll be back in goal for their match against Newcastle United on New Year’s Eve.