Bielsa in coy response when asked if Leeds are better equipped to go up

Date published: Monday 9th December 2019 1:37

Marcelo Bielsa is refusing to rest on his laurels after seeing Leeds open up an eight-point gap between themselves and third place after their victory at Huddersfield on Saturday.

Second-half goals from Ezgjan Alioski and Pablo Hernandez did the damage as the visitors stretched their impressive unbeaten run to nine games to leapfrog West Brom at the summit for 24 hours.

And victory was also Leeds sixth win in a row and their seventh victory in nine games, with the Whites looking to make it seven wins in a row when Hull are the visitors on Tuesday.

A victory in the match would strengthen United’s hopes of securing a return to the Premier League and Bielsa, speaking in a press conference to preview the game, gave a coy response when asked if the Whites were better equipped go up this time around after last season’s narrow miss.

“If we learnt something we have to show from now,” Bielsa responded.

“In football, every achievement, you cannot enjoy it. If there is a difference, we still have to show it. It is not the proper time to say we have made a difference yet.

“It wouldn’t be good to compare this team to last year’s team. There are problems from last season we are solving, but solutions we found last year we are not finding this season.

“Last season we scored every four or five chances, now it’s seven or eight. Last year we didn’t have a clean sheet like now, but it’s just analysis, we cannot say a good defence now means a good defence in the future.

“I am surprised because you are a specialist. We interpret one part of the good competition as we are talking about the whole season. If there is something we have to learn from last season, it’s not important what we do at halfway, more what we do at the end.

“I take conclusions about this part of the competition. If I answer the question you are doing, after we don’t know if it’s true in the future and we will stay in a bad position. Answer is to ignore what happened last season, more important at the end of the competition. Every team has a lack of regularity in the competition.


“We have to prepare the team to correct this bad role or correct moves. There is something not convenient – thinking we have achieved something before we do.”

Leeds were missing talismanic midfielder Kalvin Phillips on Saturday due to a one-match suspension, but Bielsa confirmed he would be drafted straight back into the side.

“He will come back to play,” Bielsa confirmed. “Someone is going to leave the team. I have not decided [who].”

Bielsa, however, confirmed that Liam Cooper remains sidelined for the match against his hometown club, with Phillips for weekend debutant Oliver Casey likely to be the only change to the matchday squad.


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