Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

Leeds identify trophy-winning successor to Bielsa – and he wants to leave

Palmeiras manager Abel Ferreira celebrates with the 2020 Copa Libertadores trophy

Leeds United have identified a trophy-winning manager who wants to leave his current club to replace Marcelo Bielsa, as per reports.

The enigmatic Bielsa could be departing the Whites come the end of the season, as is the nature of the one-year deals he signs with the club. Now aged 66, he may call time on his spell. And Leeds remain unsure what his intentions are.

They would prefer he stays on in his role. After all, he’s guided them back to the promised land and established their Premier League status.

But they would be foolish to not prepare for his exit from Elland Road. As such, they have drawn up a list of potential successors.

And according to UOL, Portuguese manager Abel Ferreira features as one of the main candidates.

Ferreira, 42, manages Palmeiras in Brazil. Since taking over in November 2020, he has helped them to win historic back-to-back Copa Libertadores trophies.

The second success in the South American equivalent of the Champions League came last weekend with a 2-1 final win over fellow Brazilian side Flamengo.

And he also won the Brazilian cup last season.

Ferreira’s contract with Palmeiras runs until December next year. But he has made it clear to the club that he is thinking of leaving.

His first role in management was with Braga in his home country from 2017-19 before he moved to a job in Greece. So he may be seeking a return to Europe.

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Ferreira is said to be taking a holiday back to Portugal in the coming days. It is during this trip when he will consider his future.

An alternative that Leeds have also picked out is his fellow countryman, Ruben Amorim.

Amorim guided Sporting to the league title last season, so is another attractive target. However, he has a €30m release clause, which is anything but attractive.

Bielsa confirms Bamford boost

Meanwhile, Bielsa has confirmed Patrick Bamford can expect to return to Leeds’ matchday squad for the clash against Chelsea on December 11.

The striker has not kicked a ball for Leeds since sustaining an ankle injury in the 1-1 draw with Newcastle on September 17.

And the absence of last season’s 17-goal top scorer has been keenly felt. Leeds have not really had a Plan B for Bamford.

Indeed, Tyler Roberts was brought back into the side on Tuesday night as Crystal Palace were beaten 1-0. And while the Wales forward worked hard for the side and had one of his better games of the season, he still remains without a goal or an assist this season.

So Bamford’s return will be hugely welcomed…

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