Leeds signing this out of favour Newcastle star would come in handy during Casilla crisis

Why Karl Darlow would be a smart signing for Leeds United

Leeds United are well set to launch another serious promotion push and are on top of the Championship table (at the time of writing).

Despite their strong start to the season, Marcelo Bielsa should look to address a couple of areas when the transfer window reopens in January. Leeds do appear a little light in a few areas and Bielsa simply cannot afford to ignore reinforcing those, given what happened last season.

As things stand, the goalkeeping department is something the Whites boss should strengthen in the New Year.

Karl Darlow in action for Newcastle United. (Getty Images)
Karl Darlow in action for Newcastle United. (Getty Images)

Kiko Casilla has started every game for Leeds this season but may face an extended stint on the sidelines as he has been charged by the FA for allegedly using racially abusive language towards Charlton Athletic forward Jonathan Leko.

The Spaniard is currently awaiting his personal hearing but it is understood that he would face a six-match suspension if he is found guilty.

Should Casilla be banned, Bielsa would have to go with summer signing Illan Meslier, who arrived at Elland Road on loan from French side Lorient on transfer deadline day as a replacement for Bailey Peacock-Farrell, who had left to join Burnley. Meslier has never featured for the Whites’ first-team but has played for the U23s on several occasions.

Keeping that in mind, going with the 19-year-old in Casilla’s absence between the sticks would be a massive gamble for Bielsa. Thus, it is important for the Argentinean tactician to lookout for a new glovesman.

Back in July, the Football Insider (h/t the Shields Gazzette) had claimed Leeds were interested in signing Newcastle goalkeeper Karl Darlow.

Karl Darlow is Newcastle's second-choice goalkeeper. (Getty Images)
Karl Darlow is Newcastle’s second-choice goalkeeper. (Getty Images)

Karl Darlow, 29, established himself as a regular at Newcastle under former boss Rafa Benitez in 2016/17 but fell out of favour after promotion to the Premier League, with Rob Elliot and then Martin Dubravka edging him out. The 29-year-old, currently the second choice behind Dubravka, is out of contract in the summer and is free to talk to foreign clubs in January.

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With Darlow making just one appearance so far this season, which has come in the Carabao Cup, Leeds must look to sign him in January. The addition of Darlow would not only add some experience to the Leeds backline, but he would be perfect to compete with Casilla in goal.


Darlow has bags of experience in his locker and could do a decent job if the Whites lose Casilla to a six-match ban. He would be a good addition and it is a deal Leeds should look to get over the line in January.

Written by Rohan Sengupta

Hi, I am Rohan Sengupta from one of the busiest cities in India, Mumbai. A Journalism graduate with a keen interest in sports, football is something I simply cannot live without and writing, discussing and analyzing the game is what I do 24*7.
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