A much-changed Leeds United side came close to beating Stoke City in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday night, eventually losing the second-round clash on penalties – and Leeds fans cannot understand why Illan Meslier was not included in the side.
Marcelo Bielsa made eight changes to the side that eased past the same team on Saturday afternoon with a comfortable 3-0 win at the Britannia. Youngsters Leif Davis, Alfie McCalmont, Mateusz Bogusz and Jack Clarke all started.
Leeds went into half-time 2-0 down, thanks to goals from Danny Batth and Sam Vokes. Bielsa made three changes at half-time, bringing on Jack Harrison, Ben White and Adam Forshaw. The switch worked, eventually drawing 2-2.
Helder Costa and Eddie Nketiah scored to send the game into penalties. Kiko Casilla failed to stop any of Stoke’s five penalties, while Harrison hit the post – though he was superb when he entered the field of play at half-time.
Leeds fans were impressed with their side’s effort despite the loss, but many were shocked that new signing Meslier was left out of the side completely. The 19-year-old is yet to make his debut for the club’s senior side, since joining on loan from Lorient.
Meslier did play for the Under-23 side in their 3-2 win over Millwall – in which he saved a penalty, but the current loanee situation at Leeds may have prevented the Frenchman from making the 18-man squad.
Only five loan players can be included in a matchday squad, and Bielsa named Costa, Nketiah, Clarke, White and Harrison in the side – all of whom are on loan. It saw Meslier miss out, and Leeds fans are bewildered on Twitter.
If Meslier can’t even get a run out in the Coca Cola Cup, what’s the point in having him on the bench for league games? Do we not have Miazek as sub GK which then frees up a space for Clarke over Gotts or one of the other kids? #lufc
— Lee (@leedeetee) August 28, 2019
BOGUSZZZZZZZZZ. Can anyone tell me why Meslier isnt even on the bench again?
— BRΔDLEY (@nixonbradley) August 27, 2019
Thought we’d have seen meslier 🤔 come down to loans again would have left white out personally to rest him and have meslier
— Luke townend (@Luketownend2) August 27, 2019
That Meslier must be dead
— ' (@LufcSteel) August 27, 2019
Why isn’t Meslier starting?
— Arjun Layall (@ArjunLayall) August 27, 2019
I’m with you on that one.
— Reece (@Dixie6Reece) August 27, 2019