Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

Pundit debunks Marcelo Bielsa ‘myth’ with furious vent at bizarre Leeds tactics

Marcelo Bielsa, Leeds United manager interview after Premier League game at Elland Road

Marcelo Bielsa’s decision to keep playing an expansive brand of football at Manchester City has been severely criticised by Joleon Lescott, who has also appeared to question the high esteem the Leeds boss is held in.

It’s the morning after the night before as far as Leeds are concerned. A 7-0 trouncing at Manchester City represents their heaviest-ever Premier League defeats and one of the worst in their proud 101-year history. You can see how we rated and slated the players at the Etihad, with only two Leeds players earning some semblance of praise.

Leeds found themselves 2-0 down after just 13 minutes as City set the tone from almost the first kick. They were 3-0 behind at the interval, with half-time coming as a relief to Bielsa’s side.

However, they continued to play their expansive brand of football in the second half as City rattled in four more. The Whites, however, were barely able to lay a glove on City in a thoroughly one-sided affair.

After the match, Lescott was far from impressed and had some serious questions about the Leeds approach.

“I just find it baffling that Bielsa gets so much credit for being this unique tactician. But yet he hasn’t been able to see that what he was doing in the first half, how they were playing, wasn’t going to be any different in the second half,” Lescott said.

“It doesn’t surprise me after seeing the first half that they conceded seven goals.”

Hargreaves equally unimpressed

Owen Hargreaves was in agreement with Lescott, admitting it was strange to see Leeds still playing such an open game.

“They kept trying to play at five, six nil and as Joleon was saying, you would’ve thought they’d try and tighten up a little bit defensively but they didn’t.

Sherwood: Bielsa taken Leeds as far as he can

Leeds haven't lived up to their hype after last season, but is that on Bielsa?

“They kept trying to play, kept trying to score. He plays his way, that’s his way of playing and I think that’s his biggest loss ever,” he said.

Lescott then added: “It wasn’t surprising that City won the game and even the first half wasn’t a surprise. That’s what City can do teams and we’ve seen that. The second half was the disappointing thing.

“I’m looking at it, change something, give your players a chance to put up a fight for morale purposes.

“You lose 3-0 to Man City you’re disappointed. But if you lose 7-0 then training is hard, motivation in the next game can be hard as well.”

Bielsa offers no excuses

Bielsa himself put the blame entirely on himself as he conceded seven goals in one game for the first time in his 568-game managerial career.

When asked by BBC Match of the Day if he thought the game would be that difficult beforehand, Bielsa said: “No way. I didn’t think the differences would be the ones we saw.

“They didn’t surprise me. What I’m saying is that we didn’t do anything well. Didn’t defend well, we didn’t manage the ball, there is nothing to take away from the game.

“When a team, the individual and collective have nothing worth valuing it is not the problem of the individuals but the conduction.

“Coming into this game we knew what we had to prevent the opponent from doing. Nothing unexpected happened, nothing surprising.

“We came to do what we expected and we weren’t able to do it.

“This is clearly a problem with the conduction.”

READ MOREKalvin Phillips return date for Leeds prompts pundit to hail ‘brilliant’ news