Leeds step up hunt for Newcastle goalkeeper Darlow
Leeds United should push on with their pursuit to sign Newcastle United goalkeeper Karl Darlow amid doubts surrounding the futures of Bailey Peacock-Farrell and Kiko Casilla.
According to reliable news outlet Football Insider, the Whites have made an approach to sign Darlow, 28, due to the uncertainty that surrounds the two current senior goalkeepers at Elland Road.
It is reported that Leeds want to know whether or not Darlow is available on loan or for a permanent move this summer, but considering the fact that he only made one appearance for Newcastle in all competitions last season, there’s every chance that the Premier League club will make the shot-stopper available.
That is good news for Leeds and one reason why they should launch a move to sign the former Nottingham Forest player before the summer transfer window slams shut early next month.
Darlow may not be playing for Newcastle in the Premier League due to Martin Dubravka’s good form, but he is proven in the Championship and would be a good fit at Elland Road if one of Peacock-Farrell or Casilla leaves.
When the Magpies won the Championship title in 2016/17, Darlow made 34 appearances in the league and kept an impressive 13 clean sheets.
He also conceded, on average, less than a goal per game wheres Casilla, since joining Leeds last January, conceded 22 goals in 19 appearances for the Yorkshire giants.
According to stats by WhoScored, Darlow made 2.1 saves per match for Newcastle in their promotion-winning season a couple of years ago. He also completed 8.1 long balls per match – an important stat for goalkeepers when it comes to distributing the ball.
In comparison, Casilla averaged 1.9 saves per match for Leeds last season in the Championship and only completed 4.7 long balls per match. He did however complete more passes a 16.6 per match while Darlow in 2016/17 averaged 9.4.
Darlow is an experienced set of hands in the Championship and if Casilla or Peacock-Farrell moved on, he would be a more than good enough replacement.
He’s a Championship winner, he’s still got plenty of years left in him at the age of 28 and with 140 second-tier appearances to his name, Victor Orta and Marcelo Bielsa will find it hard to find anyone better suited to their needs than him.