Chelsea manager Frank Lampard says that the club’s work behind the scenes studying Leeds’ “unique” game plan paid off in Saturday’s win.
The Blues recovered from Patrick Bamford’s fourth-minute goal to claim a 3-1 victory at Stamford Bridge.
Olivier Giroud justified his start with the first, before Kurt Zouma and Christian Pulisic completed the turnaround.
Leeds’ strength in running and pressing has caused significant problems for many teams this season. Indeed, Liverpool scraped through with a 4-3 win while Manchester City could only earn a 1-1 draw.
As such, Lampard revealed after his side’s victory that he had studied Marcelo Bielsa’s tactics extensively.
Asked if beating opponents in key player battles was vital to eventually securing the win, the Blues boss said: “We looked a lot at Leeds because they are a team you have to analyse closely because they are slightly unique.
“The players obviously watch games every week as well but it’s our job to get the message.
“The message was that at times, when it’s man-to-man [marking] you have to use your quality to take someone out of the game and then travel with the ball and then things can open up.”
“But it’s not always that. Our centre-backs – Thiago Silva and the moments he has to bring his quality on the ball from the back when it’s two against one,” Lampard added when speaking to Sky Sports (via BBC Sport).
“He did that and he found passes through the lines. There were lots of great individual performances and I thought the lads took on all the information and the game plan and such really well.
“We deserved to win the game pretty comfortably, as much as you will do against Leeds.”
Lampard reveals Ziyech injury
On a flatter note for Chelsea, winger Hakim Ziyech withdrew after 30 minutes due to injury.
Lampard said that the Moroccan has a hamstring problem and will undergo a scan to determine the length of his absence.
Leeds also had injury woes during the match, with defender Robin Koch pulling up inside 10 minutes.