LAFC announced on Monday they’ve signed goalkeeper Jamal Blackman on a free transfer.
The 27-year-old is a native of England, and will therefore occupy an international roster slot for the rest of the 2021 season. LAFC will have a club option on his deal for the 2022 season.
“Jamal is a talented goalkeeper and an important addition to the Club” said Co-President and General Manager John Thorrington in a team statement. “We look forward to welcoming him and are confident that he will prove to be a great fit with his skills and experience.”
Blackman came through Chelsea FC’s academy ranks, turning pro in 2011 and being on the roster for Chelsea’s Champions League title in 2012. Beginning in 2014, the goalkeeper became part of Chelsea’s loan army, playing in the English lower leagues at Wycombe Wanderers, Sheffield United, Bristol Rovers and Rotherham United, and abroad at Swedish outfit Östersund. He went on additional loans, but did not make league appearances, at Middlesbrough, Leeds United, and Vitesse.
It’s unclear if Blackman is slotting in as the 3rd-string goalkeeper, if he’ll be the backup, or if he may even supplant Tomas Romero as the starter at this point in the season. We know Bob Bradley is comfortable swapping out goalkeepers, but Romero has really played pretty well this season since becoming the starter, so who knows. Blackman is the oldest of the club’s goalkeepers, and technically the most experienced in terms of career pro appearances, but he’s only made 12 top-flight appearances in his career, while Romero has already made 15 this season for LAFC.
So we’ll see where Blackman slots in, but LAFC now have three goalkeepers on the roster for the stretch run, so the team has options in case any players go down in the coming months.
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