By Kevin Phillips

28th May, 2020 | 6:00pm

Exclusive: Bielsa tipped to block expected Leeds star exit despite £5m deal all but done

Kevin Phillips has claimed he expects Marcelo Bielsa to block the expected Leeds United exit of Kiko Casilla this summer.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Premier League and England striker revealed that he does not see the Argentine recruiting a new senior goalkeeper.

This site revealed last month Casilla, 33, was thinking about a transfer back to a La Liga club following his eight-match racism ban.

A parting of the ways for Casilla and Leeds has appeared likely following the storm of criticism accompanying his suspension, and with the £5million permanent signing of loanee Illan Meslier close to being completed.

But Phillips believes there is still a route back to redemption and the United starting XI for the experienced Spanish keeper.

“Marcelo Bielsa likes his goalkeeper to be comfortable with the ball at his feet and be able to drill passes left foot, right foot,” the former Premier League Golden Boot winner told Football Insider.

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“It would not surprise me if he stuck with Casilla for that reason. He is good on the ball.

“But, if I am a supporter I would like to see someone else between the sticks.”

Casilla spent an extended time back in Spain when the UK went into lockdown in mid-March.

But he is back in England and has been taking in training as plans accelerate for the expected Championship return next month.

Even when the campaign does resume, Casilla won’t be available for Leeds’ next six matches following the restart as he completes his own personal suspension.

Meslier stepped in for the two United wins before the lockdown and is set for an extended opportunity in goal.

In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that one of the club’s loan stars is facing an uncertain future amid sensational development.