One of the most important months of the year is looming on the horizon for Victor Orta as he prepares to make some vital decisions regarding Leeds United’s transfer activity.
Marcelo Bielsa has remained consistent in his stance towards the size of his squad and his refusal to be drawn into discussion over the January window, but it seems likely that both he and Orta are lining up a move for a new goalkeeper.
Bailey Peacock-Farrell has showcased his excellent shot stopping ability with a multitude of outstanding saves this season, but individual errors and a glaring lack of experience may cost him a place in the starting eleven in January.
Bielsa admitted that he had planned to drop the Thorp Arch academy product last month before Jamal Blackman’s spell with Leeds was cruelly cut short by a serious injury, and that admission hints at a lack of trust in the young goalkeeper.
With that being said, it is no surprise that Leeds are interested in making a move for Newcastle United’s Karl Darlow, according to the Daily Mirror.
Darlow is effectively surplus to requirements at St James’ Park and his experience in the Championship makes him a great option for the Whites to consider, however, there is another Premier League outcast who could transform Leeds’ defence, Fraser Forster (valued at £9 million by Transfermarkt).
The 6’7″ man mountain possesses a physical presence which Peacock-Farrell is distinctly lacking. Leeds’ first-choice stopper has not been made to pay for his physical shortcomings too regularly this season, but his lack of confidence when stepping out to collect crosses could ultimately come back to bite the club when it matters most.
This is where Forster comes in. The 30-year-old goalkeeper has seen his reputation dwindle rapidly in recent years following a bright start to life in English football, but the role which momentum has played in that fall cannot be underestimated.
Most great goalkeepers go through periods of time which are riddled by individual errors, and sometimes the best solution to the problem is simply embarking on a new challenge.
Forster will be craving a fresh start in January to resurrect his stuttering career at a club where his brilliant reflexes and assertive command of his penalty area would be put to good use.
Elland Road is certainly a destination which can provide that for Forster and, if Leeds are indeed interested in signing a new stopper, they would be foolish not to target him over Darlow.
Orta has a big decision to make in January.
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