Date: 5th February 2020 at 7:00am
Written by: Zak Roome

Hordes of Leeds United fans have been urging Marcelo Bielsa to axe Kiko Casilla when the Whites face Nottingham Forest on Saturday, and start Illan Meslier.

Casilla had an afternoon to forget at the weekend as we lost at home to Wigan Athletic, with the veteran shot-stopper parrying a long-range effort straight back into danger despite having a clear line of sight on the strike.

The 33-year-old was also later beaten from a corner as he stood on the line, with the ball looping off Pablo Hernandez and over his compatriot to decide the match.

It was the 27th goal Casilla has now conceded in 30 Championship fixtures this season, having opened all of our league and Carabao Cup games to date in 2019/20 – only sitting out the FA Cup Third Round loss at Premier League Arsenal.

Meslier was fielded between the sticks at the Emirates Stadium on January 6 as the on-loan FC Lorient talent was given his United first-team debut, and made a solid account for himself.

The 19-year-old France U21 international was extremely tidy with both his feet and hands in North London, and certainly did not look overwhelmed by facing up against one of the country’s established top-six sides.

He was excellent to deny Brazilian prospect Gabriel Martinelli, as well, and could not be faulted for Reiss Nelson’s 55th-minute winner.

Who should start at the City Ground on Saturday?





Meslier recorded four saves, one collection and parried three saves against the Gunners, while boasting an 82% pass completion rate with 32 of his 39 balls finding teammates, per WhoScored data.

Casilla has completed 724 of his 902 passes in the Championship this term for an 80.2% completion rate, and averages 2.0 saves and 0.4 successful runs out per game, according to Sofa Score.

The one-time Spain international is also the second-tier’s leading ‘keeper for clean sheets with 12, though has not kept one in his last nine league matches.

Meslier has not featured for the first-team since his debut against Arsenal but has been on the bench for 19 Championship fixtures this term.

Here are some of the messages shared, as hordes of fans called for Bielsa to drop Casilla and some suggested Meslier should start instead…

In other Leeds United news, a Whites talent has been ruled out for the next three months through injury.

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