Bielsa sets record straight over new version of events in Leeds keeper controversy

Date published: Thursday 11th March 2021 3:37 - Jonny Whitfield

Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa has denied rumours that figures inside the club told him to drop goalkeeper Kiko Casilla and promote Elia Caprile.

The battle to be the Whites‘ No. 2 changed this week, with Casilla dropping out of the squad to face West Ham.

Young Italian Elia Caprile took his place on the bench, leading to a cryptic social media post from Casilla.

Indeed, the post has forced the Spaniard’s agent to comment, with the intermediary confident that their client was not talking about his recent lack of game time.

Nevertheless, questions arose in Thursday’s press conference about the reasons behind Bielsa’s decision.

One journalist questioned whether Bielsa had received word from inside his club to switch his goalkeepers around, a claim which the manager shut down.

Bielsa said (via Leeds Live): “What I said is that, our press office informed me there were a lot of questions asked a bout Casilla’s absence and Caprile’s inclusion.

“They also said they had responded my decision had to do with the fact Caprile had been performing very well. After they told me, no they did not say this.

Kiko Casilla, Leeds goalkeeper

“I believe in all the versions they tell me because they are all of good intentions, but what I do say is, only I explain the decisions I make. The arguments I made to decide are not to communicate them, but just communicate the decision.

“Evidently, I must have expressed myself incorrectly for you to have understood the club had indicated I should have included Caprile, which the club did not do, of course.

“The respect they reserve for everyone’s tasks is complete.”

Bielsa also confirmed that he expects Caprile to keep his place on the bench “for some time”, because he has “anticipated” the squad.

However, he kept fairly quiet on his reasons for the recent switch.

Bielsa largely quiet on Leeds goalkeepers

“If you receive notice from the institution that said Caprile was given a place on the bench due to his performance. This is not a conclusion I have said,” the Argentine said.

“When I make a decision for the presence or absence of a player, I don’t explain the motives. What I do say is the truth. If it’s because of injury, I say so.

“In the case of Casilla and Caprile, of course I value Caprile. I also know the difference between one and the other. What I said to explain Casila’s absence, was he was not injured.


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“I decided he would not participate and Caprile would. What I said is true and sufficient.”

Leeds return to action on Saturday when they host Chelsea at Elland Road.

READ MORE: Leeds centurion rejects new deal, close to signing with European giants

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