Bielsa tipped to take CL by storm with ‘monster’ Leeds team in lofty prediction
Peterborough chairman Darragh MacAnthony says that Leeds United will be in the Champions League within the next four seasons.
The Whites made history last season by securing a long-awaited return to the Premier League. After 16 years away featuring near-misses at promotion, however, Leeds have not wasted their comeback. Marcelo Bielsa’s side sit 10th in the Premier League and a top-half finish remains well within reach.
Boss Bielsa has proved a welcome addition to the top flight for his aggressive and energetic style of play.
What’s more, he has largely kept the bulk of his Championship team, with new signing Raphinha proving an instant hit.
But while Leeds are enjoying their return to the top flight for now, MacAnthony believes that the hard work will begin next season in taking the club forward.
Nevertheless, he feels that the “clever people” running the club are on a surefire road to better things.
“I think Leeds, within the next three or four years if not sooner, will be in the Champions League spots,” he told the Hard Truth Podcast.
“This is a big club. It’s run by some clever people. I really see Leeds on the ascendancy.
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“Next year I would say top six. That club is just building and building. They’ve sold equity to the [San Francisco] 49ers, commercially it’ll be a mammoth again.”
Leeds have fond memories of playing in Europe, after reaching the UEFA Cup semi-finals in the 1999/2000 season.
Furthermore, they got to the Champions League last four in 2000/01, before their slide down the division in 2004.
Bielsa has created Leeds ‘monster’
Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live, Chris Sutton added: “I think it tells us a lot about Leeds this season, their belief coming up to the Premier League, their belief in the manager.
“We hear about how intense their training sessions are and they believe in each other.
“I think that this would be their most outstanding result of the season and I believe this puts them into a great mindset going into next season, to believe they can be even stronger, maybe even push for a European place.
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“Leeds have some talented players, but they aren’t the team that you’d say have household names as such. Bielsa has created this monster and we still don’t know whether Bielsa will be there next season.
“All Leeds fans are telling me there’s no way he will go, I don’t think he will go but he is building something very, very special there – we saw that against Manchester City.”
Bielsa moved to deny rumours that he has signed a new deal at Elland Road in his latest press conference.
READ MORE: Bielsa denies Leeds contract rumour; plays down idea of European football