Noel Whelan has told BBC Radio Leeds (broadcast on 11/1 from 17:00) that it was criminal for Kiko Casilla to be beaten at his near post for the opening goal in Leeds United’s 2-0 defeat against Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side have been knocked off top spot in the Championship after a loss at Elland Road. It was a familiar story for the Whites. They had more than enough chances to win, but could not find the back of the net.
And they were punished. The Owls took the lead in the 87th minute with Jacob Murphy drilling the ball past Casilla from a tight angle.
The Spaniard will be extremely disappointed with the goal. Murphy managed to beat him at his near post from wide out. And Whelan suggested that the Leeds stopper made a big mistake.
“He’s outside the six-yard box where he’s taken the shot,” he told BBC Radio Leeds. “I know it’s a little ball through from Nuhiu, he takes a touch, but he’s outside the six-yard box. You’ve got to be covering your near post.
“It’s got to be inch-perfect, it’s got to be across the keeper. This has gone near post. That’s criminal. You’ve got to be expecting your goalkeeper to save that.”
TBR View – Bielsa needs to consider dropping Casilla
Casilla’s form has arguably dipped in recent weeks. He made some outstanding saves in the draw at West Brom. But he has also made a number of mistakes.
Meanwhile, Illan Meslier’s stock continues to rise. The young loanee has impressed for the under-23s this season, and he produced a remarkable performance in the FA Cup defeat at Arsenal.
Bielsa clearly hates to make changes unless his hand is forced. So it would perhaps be a surprise to see Casilla dropped anytime soon.
But Meslier is now knocking on the door. And after Saturday’s defeat, Casilla is surely running out of chances to prove that he is the goalkeeper that will take Leeds across the line in the promotion race.