Leeds United have today confirmed the signing of Chelsea goalkeeper Jamal Blackman on a one-year loan deal. Blackman joins after weeks of speculation and is training with the team and Marcelo Bielsa for the first time today.
The deal has dragged on as Leeds looked to nip in here and there to negotiate with the London club as they try to replace Italian head-coach Antonio Conte. Blackman was at Elland Road nearly two weeks ago, pictured by a fan before a post on Instagram confirmed he has also headed up to Thorp Arch later that afternoon. It then went very quiet until the back-end of last week. Blackman has completed his medical over the weekend.
Blackman spent last season on loan at another Yorkshire club Sheffield United and impressed hugely, Blades fans wanted the keeper back in the main but Leeds have managed to do a second deal with Chelsea, the only two first-team signings so far this summer have both arrived from the club. Blackman joins central midfielder Lewis Baker at the club, the 23-year-old signed a couple of weeks bag as the first Marcelo Bielsa signing. Blackman will now compete with highly regarded Northern Ireland keeper Baily Peacock-Farrell for the number one shirt. Both are expected to feature at Forest Green tomorrow night.
Leeds had previously been linked with Angus Gunn and David Stockdale. The Manchester City keeper Gunn wasn’t to be loaned out and joined Southampton for a fee of £13 million. Leeds then tried to bag David Stockdale on loan but Birmingham weren’t entertaining such offers, ex-Leeds boss Garry Monk said he would only leave on the clubs terms. Leeds weren’t willing to sign the player on a permanent deal due to such high wage demands despite Birmingham offering him out on a free transfer.