Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

Agbonlahor sticks boot in and backs Jesse Marsch in contempt of Bielsa, Leeds methods

Jesse Marsch, Leeds v Southampton April 2022

Gabby Agbonlahor has backed up comments from Leeds United manager Jesse Marsch, criticising the methods of predecessor Marcelo Bielsa.

Leeds have found their feet quickly under Marsch.They needed to do just that, given they were in a precarious position following four heavy losses on the bounce.

Marsch has gotten Leeds back to winning ways. The Whites have emerged victorious in three of their last four games, drawing the other 1-1 with Southampton.

As such, they now sit in 16th place, nine points above the drop zone. Part of the success under Marsch can be attributed to players returning from injury.

At one point, there were as many as nine Leeds stars in the treatment room. Returns for a number of those players have led to better results.

Furthermore, Marsch’s predecessor Bielsa was well known for pushing his players to the limit. Clearly, that got too much for a number of them, which was reinforced in both injuries and performances.

Agbonlahor agrees with Marsch over Bielsa

In fact, Marsch recently called out the methods of Bielsa. The manager referred to the stress levels being “incredibly high” and the players being “over-trained”.

Former Premier League striker Agbonlahor has backed Marsch up in his assessment of Bielsa.

“I have heard that from the Leeds United camp that they don’t mind training hard – players don’t mind training hard – but you need the right recovery. I heard that Bielsa’s training is similar to a game, the intensity,” Agbonlahor said, quoted by Leeds Live.

“You can’t do that three or four days a week and expect to have that intensity in a game. They’re human beings, they’re going get injuries. Muscle injuries like calves, hamstrings, thigh injuries.”

Jesse Marsch, Leeds Utd manager, controls the ball during Premier League game Southampton at Elland Road

While some may have taken umbrage to Marsch’s negative comments towards Bielsa, it seems Agbonlahor is in agreement that the manager was working his players too hard.

“Normally the week without a midweek game, the Monday would be the warm down from the Saturday. Tuesday would be the hard session where you’re covering the most ground, high intensity.

“Wednesday would be a cool down, Thursday you start doing bits that’s not as hard, Friday a little bit,” Agbonlahor said.

Indeed, it seems the Leeds regime was anything but regular in terms of a Premier League side.

“Then the game on Saturday where you put it in. I feel the Leeds players were overworked under Bielsa but that was his style,” he added.

Leeds seem to be thriving more under Marsch, in what is likely a less intense fitness and training regime.

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