An Italian journalist has claimed Leeds United have reached out to a manager about taking over the Elland Road hotseat, if Marcelo Bielsa doesn’t commit to a new deal.
Since joining in 2018, Bielsa has only signed 12-month contracts with the club. That has consistently led to speculation over his future at this stage of each of his seasons in England. And with no extension agreed upon as of yet, this year is no different.
At this stage, Bielsa is expected to stay with the Whites. But it appears Leeds have a plan in place should he decide otherwise.
According to Sport Italia’s Gianluigi Longari (via MOT Leeds News), Paulo Fonseca is a man Leeds may turn to.
Fonseca is currently in charge at AS Roma, but it looks likely he is in the final weeks of his time with Serie A outfit. In fact, there was speculation he would be sacked after his side’s 6-2 loss to Manchester United in the semi-finals of the Europa League earlier this week.
But with the 48-year-old out of contract at the end of the June anyway, he will be kept on until the end of the season. He will then resign from his role, with Roma wanting ex-Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri to replace him.
Of course, that will leave Fonseca available. But it is not only Leeds who have sounded him out.
Longari adds that Napoli, Nice and Crystal Palace are also considering appointing him. Therefore, there may be some competition for his signature in the months ahead.
Bielsa staying quiet
It is anticipated that Bielsa will soon put pen-to-paper on a new deal. However, the Argentine coach is hesitant to publicly discuss the matter before the 2020/21 Premier League has concluded.
“Any reference to this subject, I prefer to make after the competition has finished,” Bielsa insisted on Thursday.
“I appreciate the words of the owner with regards to my continuity. But I agree with what he said about Leeds being prestigious above any others.
“Due to the solidness of this organisation, they have the facility to make adequate/correct decisions.”
The 65-year-old currently has Leeds in 10th place after what has been an impressive return to the top flight. Although, defeat to Brighton has hurt their chances of making a late push for European qualification.