Right move? Four names emerges as Leeds United plot new signing in problem position – View
Leeds United look to be targeting EFL-proven goalkeepers as they plot the likely replacement of Illan Meslier this summer.
The Whites are heading into pre-season at the start of next month with plenty of work needing to be done to the playing squad.
If Illan Meslier is to leave as most expect, it leaves the club with the task of replacing him with a new first-choice goalkeeper.
Football League World are reporting that the club are looking at four goalkeepers to take them into the Championship next season, with internal discussions underway.
Here, we look at all four names being mentioned and whether they would be good moves for the club…
Viktor Johansson – Rotherham United
The name most prominently featuring in the report is Rotherham United’s Viktor Johansson, who scooped up his club’s Players’ Player of the Season after his heroics in 22/23.
The Millers stayed up with a 19th-placed finish, and have their goalkeeper to thank for a huge contribution, keeping 13 clean sheets along the way.
Not only that, but the Swedish stopper was statistically the league’s best goalkeeper for expected goals prevented throughout the campaign:
After struggling with Meslier’s poor shot-stopping, it looks as though Johansson would bring very effective shot-stopping to Elland Road.
Marek Rodak – Fulham
Rodak has been sidelined for the majority of the last 12 months, with Bernd Leno the star between the sticks at Craven Cottage.
It’s hard to blame Marco Silva for being so dead-set on his number one, given Leno was one of the better goalkeepers in the Premier League last season.
Rodak, at 26, will surely be looking for more regular game time after being part of the Cottagers’ two promotions since becoming a senior option in 2019.
The Slovakian international made seven appearances for Fulham last season, where he kept three clean sheets, one of those being against Leeds in the FA Cup.
Another ‘keeper who has proven to be one of the best in the division when he has been starting for Fulham in 19/20 and 21/22.
Which goalkeeper should Leeds sign?
Freddie Woodman – Preston North End
The third name on the list is someone who has previously been a target for Leeds, with Preston North End’s Freddie Woodman.
A former Newcastle United man, Woodman left the Magpies in the summer of 2022 permanently as he joined PNE in the Championship.
It’s been a long-time coming after being on the fringes at Newcastle, and he proved it to be an inspired decision with 17 clean sheets in 22/23.
Preston might drive a hard bargain after only signing him last summer, but he’s another ‘keeper who would be joining Leeds as one of the best around in the division.
Karl Darlow – Newcastle United
The most ‘experienced’ name on the list and perhaps the most unlikely too in Newcastle’s Karl Darlow.
Someone who always seems to be linked with an EFL move, as his time at Newcastle seems to be spent not involved, especially now that Champions League football is taking place on Tyneside.
He’s another that you know what you’re getting if he did join, a very competent shot-stopper as well as a modern goalkeeper that is comfortable with the ball at his feet.
The reason for this not being a likely signing is that Middlesbrough are in pole position to keep him in the North East, and discussions there are already taking place.