Leeds United have today announced the sale of goalkeeper Bailey Peacock-Farrell to Burnley. The young Northern Ireland keeper Moves to Turf Moor in a deal believed to be worth £3.5 million signing a four year contract. Peacock-Farrell made his mark on the first team in March 2018, promoted to first choice keeper by Paul Heckingbottom following the poor performance of Felix Wiedwald, he remained first choice keeper at the start of the 2018-2019 season despite the signing of Jamal Blackman on loan. Kiko Casilla’s arrival at Elland Road put an end to Peacock-Farrell’s run as first choice between the sticks and he made the headlines back in June after comments he made whilst on international duty.
If I stay at Leeds, I’ll be staying at Leeds to play. The two scenarios would probably be I’m staying at Leeds and I’m playing or I’ll have to be elsewhere I think. The aim is to be playing football, I have to. I’m not one of those goalkeepers who could be content with sitting on the bench and picking up a wage.
In pre-season it seemed clear that Kiko Casilla would remain first choice, as such perhaps the writing was on the wall for Peacock-Farrell. The approach from Burnley comes following Aston Villa snapping up Tom Heaton but there is still stiff competition between the sticks with England internationals Nick Pope and Joe Hart at the club. A move to a Premiership team perhaps but you would think Peacock-Farrell’s opportunities will be limited at Burnley, a strange move given his comments regarding first team football this summer. Leeds are left with first choice keeper Kiko Casilla with his likely understood set to be Kamil Miazek.
Kiko Casilla was the first signing of the January 2019 transfer window on a free transfer from Real Madrid. His most impressive spell came at Espanyo after Cristian Alvarez left in 2013 leading to a return to Real Madrid in 2015. Understudy to Keylor Navas he saw limited first team action but did make notable appearances in the Champions League. At his time at Real Madrid Casilla picked up one La Liga (2017) winners medal and three Champions League (2016, 2017, 2018) winners medals. An impressive pedigree but the calamitous performance against Derby in the play-off second leg leave some questions hanging over him. Let’s hope the team have got used to playing with a ‘sweeper keeper’ this summer.
Once a Feyenoord youngster, Kamil Miazek signed on trial initially in October 2017, making the deal permanent in January 2018. He is a bit down the goalkeeping pecking order at Leeds, missing out on first team action when Bailey Peacock-Farrell and Jamal Blackman were injured with Will Huffer getting the call up instead. But many fans rate him as being better than Peacock-Farrell and Huffer and has impressed for the U23s, saving two penalties in the Professional Development League final shootout. He earned a one-year contract extension in May will be hoping to push for some first team football this season.
I can’t say that Peacock-Farrell ever really convinced me and £3.5 million seems like a good deal for Leeds United. There is plenty of strength in the goalkeeper department from the youth levels but the club may still seek a more experienced backup for Casilla before the transfer window closes in a weeks time.