Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

‘I have to admit’ – beaten Bielsa accepts Leeds methods not working; reveals resource he ‘hasn’t used’

Marcelo Bielsa, Leeds United v Tottenham February 2022

Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa admitted that his side are struggling to get out of their rut following another heavy Premier League defeat.

The Whites came into the game under mounting pressure following successive heavy defeats. While they came back against Manchester United, they eventually shipped four goals.

What’s more, the 6-0 defeat to Liverpool on Wednesday continued to expose Leeds’ problems with their failure to properly change from their one-on-one marking system.

But the worries for Bielsa continued on Saturday when Tottenham thrashed Leeds 4-0 at Elland Road. Reports subsequently claimed after the match that Leeds are seriously considering the manager’s future.

Speaking to BT Sport after the match, though, Bielsa kept his focus on the reasons why his side failed to turn the tide.

“I think the result is fair. We could have reduced the differences but we were never able to dominate the game,” the Argentine said.

“Even if we created goalscoring chances we never had a feeling of dominance over the opponent. There are conclusions that the reality invites you to make. But there is also another way of looking at things.”

Indeed, Bielsa pointed to the fact that he tried to put out a more defensive team in the first half to shore his leaky team up.But the manager admitted that it “didn’t give us the results I was looking for”.

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He added in a post-match press conference that his side’s press and ability to hunt the ball down “hasn’t happened” in their past three games.

While he said Leeds are making “enormous efforts” to “obstruct” their opponents’ build-up, the opponents are “managing to circulate the ball well”.

But Bielsa then admitted: “When the opposite [to Leeds’ efforts] happens I have to admit what I am proposing is not working.”

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As for a Plan B, which many have called for to stop the rot, the Argentine insisted that he is trying.

Speaking in his interview with BT Sport, he said: “”Perhaps what you’re referring to is to play more in our own half and it’s the resource that up until now I haven’t used.

“And everything that hasn’t been used is always imagined as the solution.”

Bielsa tackles Leeds goal record

Marcelo Bielsa worried Leeds United 2022 TEAMtalk1

The defeat to Tottenham means Leeds have now shipped 60 Premier League goals already this season.

“No team can think in progressing within the competition if you have a defensive weakness that’s so manifested like ours,” Bielsa admitted.

But he added that the problems lie with “the total functioning of the team”, rather than in attack or defence.

“We are a team where one thing conditions the other. That link has stopped being efficient,” he said.

The latest result left Leeds 16th in the Premier League, but two of the teams below have games in hand.