Leeds United: Why Marcelo Bielsa is happy for staff to ‘abandon me’

FOR Marcelo Bielsa, the sight of his coaching acolytes leaving Leeds United and striking out on their own is something which he always derives professional pleasure from.

Just as Carlos Corberan’s progress at Thorp Arch convinced Huddersfield Town that he was the individual they sought to usher in a brave new dawn, so Argentine Primera Division strugglers Godoy Cruz have now appointed another trusted Bielsa lieutenant in Diego Flores, who left Leeds in the summer of 2020.

Just as the Leeds head coach educates his players, his training extends to his staff, provided with the ultimate finishing school under one of the coaching doyens of world football.

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Bielsa said: “The people who work as principal manager must have the characteristics that a manager has.

Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa. Picture: Tony Johnson

“In the case of Flores and Corberan, who were here with us, they are very valuable people with clear aptitudes to take on board as a manager after working close to us.

“It doesn’t create them as important. Coaches have to convince and give orders that are followed. After what they propose, when they try to convince or demand they are obeyed, it doesn’t have a major importance. The knowledge is less important than the capacity to convince.

“There are very few coaches who triumph who don’t manage to convince or be obeyed. The great virtue of Flores and Corberan is that they are people who have constructed themselves.

“With respect to the rest of my staff, I always dream that they abandon me to find their space. I always recommend to them that they leave.”

A figure who accepts the concept of staff leaving for their own betterment, Bielsa is also someone who does not worry about another part of football which he cannot particularly control in terms of injuries, with Leeds currently down on numbers.

Diego Llorente, Robin Koch and Patrick Bamford will again be unavailable for tomorrow’s home game with West Ham, while Raphinha and Luke Ayling will continue to be monitored before a decision is made.

Jack Harrison could be back in the reckoning after completing his spell in self-isolation under Covid protocols, although his level of match fitness, after training at home, will be assessed.