MOT View: 17% worse than usual - Leeds ace will be desperate not to repeat Saturday nightmare
Leeds United goalkeeper Illan Meslier must be learning that football can be a fickle game.
A little over seven days ago, the 20-year-old was a hero as he put in a world class performance to keep Sheffield United at bay in a late 1-0 win for his side.
Fast forward to Saturday evening, however, and he was talking a pummelling from his own fans for a shaky display in the 1-1 draw against Manchester City.
In particular, Meslier’s kicking took a lot of flak at the weekend.
A closer look at the stats shows why too.
Against City, the Frenchman’s pass completion rate was 79% – nearly 8% lower than his season average, as per Wyscout.
If we break that down further, just eight of Meslier’s 15 attempted forward passes were accurate.
That gave him a completion rate of 53% – over 17% lower than his season average.
With such uncharacteristically poor stats, it’s perhaps little surprise that one of Meslier’s miscues was instrumental to the goal that he conceded.
The incident starts with a simple pass from Robin Koch.
This is the kind of things we see 50 times a game from Leeds, and it’s really quite a low pressure situation.
As Meslier makes contact with the ball, he is in no immediate danger, and has a good view of the entire field in front of him.
But even with those advantages, he skews his kick, and lands it right at the feet of Benjamin Mendy.
From there it’s just 10 seconds and a few short passes until Raheem Sterling is firing a shot into the bottom corner.
Of course, the goal wasn’t entirely the goalkeeper’s fault, but such subpar distribution is always liable to put a team under the cosh.
Meslier has been exemplary since he forced his way into Marcelo Bielsa’s first team plans, but he will be desperate to ensure that he doesn’t make a habit of his distribution nightmare on Saturday.
In other Leeds United news, Phil Hay: Player has jetted into England ahead of last-minute Leeds move.