'Almost flawless': Jesse Marsch says Leeds have a young talent in their ranks whose potential is 'huge'
Leeds United manager Jesse Marsch has waxed lyrical about Whites goalkeeper Illan Meslier, in conversation with Leeds Live.
The 22-year-old has been considered one of the brightest prospects at Elland Road for some time.
Meslier has made a huge name for himself since arriving at Leeds from French club Lorient in 2019.
He initially joined the Whites on loan before signing permanently in summer 2020 for a reported £5million.
Marcelo Bielsa was so impressed with the Frenchman that he made him the youngest first-choice keeper in the Premier League.
And Meslier hasn’t disappointed, developing into a keeper worthy of being first-choice for a top-flight team.
He has helped the Whites go unbeaten in five league games, keeping consecutive clean sheets against Watford and Crystal Palace.
“Yes, let’s keep him”
Speaking ahead of Leeds’ Elland Road meeting with Manchester City, Marsch sung his goalkeeper’s praises.
“I think Illan’s potential moving forward is huge,” he said.
“The best thing that I’ve seen from him in the last weeks is more and more confidence.
“Even though I talked about how he didn’t train at all before the Watford match, then he came into the match and was almost flawless.
“I think that was a big moment in Illan’s career, to know that in big moments you need a goalkeeper who is ready no matter what the circumstances are.
“Like I’ve said already, I’m not the best goalkeeper coach but I understand the mentality of what the goalkeeper position requires.
“That’s been the focus of my work with Illan and I think he’s responded great and played really well. The answer is yes, let’s keep him.”
Saturday’s game will have huge ramifications for both Leeds and Man City at opposite ends of the table.
The Whites are currently five points clear of the relegation zone, but 18th-placed Everton have a game in hand.
Meanwhile, City need to win in their neck-and-neck title race with Liverpool.
If Meslier helps Leeds get a result against Pep Guardiola’s side, he’ll be making two sets of fans very happy.
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