Leeds United goalkeeper Illan Meslier has been praised by Elland Road cult hero Dominic Matteo, who says the Whites ace “has got it all”.
The 21-year-old has made a big name for himself since arriving at Leeds from French club Lorient in 2019.
Meslier initially joined the Whites on loan before signing permanently last summer for a reported £5million.
The Frenchman has become the Premier League’s youngest first-choice goalkeeper and has played 29 of Leeds’ league games this season, missing just one due to illness.
He has kept nine clean sheets to break Joe Hart’s record for a keeper under 21 years of age, and looks destined for a successful career at the highest level.
Matteo praised Meslier in his latest Yorkshire Evening Post column, on the subject of Leeds’ top players and how the club should look to tie them down to bumper contracts.
“It might take the kind of contracts Leeds United haven’t paid, perhaps since Mark Viduka’s days, real high end money to tie your best players down,” wrote Matteo.
“Otherwise, you risk losing them and then you have to shell out millions more to replace them and rebuild, which is even more costly.
“Meslier has had a hell of a year. A lot of players have had unbelievable seasons but when you look at players who would command a really high fee, Meslier has to be one. He’s got it all.
“Obviously he can still get a bit stronger and more physical and that will come with age.”
Bielsa entrusting Meslier with the Premier League No. 1 role at the start of the season showed just how much potential he has, and he’s certainly repaid his manager’s faith.
That said, with success comes interest from other clubs, and there’s bound to be interest in Leeds’ top players.
Matteo is right – the Whites need to really push the boat out in terms of bumper new deals.