Despite their weekend defeat to Arsenal, Leeds still have a lot to be excited about in their returning Premier League season. They are currently 11th in the table and will be looking to keep banking points in order to vie for a spot in the Europa League next season.
Indeed, since the Whites returned to top flight soccer after 16 years away, they have been a solid unit. Leeds have upset big sides including Manchester City and Leicester with a 1-1 draw and 3-1 win respectively, and have been involved in some eye-catching games, not least the 4-2 defeat to the Gunners on Sunday afternoon.
Their transfer haul over the summer of 2020 saw Victor Orta snap up Raphinha among others, but there’s one man that he and Andrea Radrizzani will be eager to do business with.
Marcelo Bielsa is currently in the final six months of his contract at Elland Road and now, reports have emerged that he is finally ready to once again extend his stay with the Yorkshire outfit. According to soccer Insider, the Argentine is set to pen a new one-year deal once talks with Radrizzani commence this summer, with the Leeds boss himself revealing in his pre-match press conference on Friday that “any needs the club has, I always respond to them with open arms”.
Bielsa has made huge waves in English soccer since his arrival to the then Championship side in 2018. He spearheaded Leeds to their historic title and promotion-winning season last year, ending their agonising Premier League drought.
Their stance in the table this season shows that they’re far from in trouble of entering a relegation scrap. Leeds have banked 32 points for the season so far, winning ten of their 23 games played.
With Bielsa set extend his stay in Yorkshire, the Whites could really fancy themselves as dark horses moving forwards.
“Bielsa is unique,” Kieran Maguire told soccer Insider. “He ploughs his own furrow, he operates in his own way. We are living in Bielsa’s world and not the other way around.
“I don’t think there’s any concern from Leeds’ point of view because he is a man who works on the basis of a handshake and if he’s happy, the contract gets signed.
“Would bigger clubs be interested? I don’t know because he is unique in the way he operates and he’s got a fantastic relationship with the board and a fantastic relationship with the fans.
“I don’t see a problem. Radrizzani wants him to stay, the fans want him to stay, the players want him to stay, and he seems settled.”
Indeed, the Leeds players and fanbase have found a manager that fits their dynamic and they won’t be willing to let him go any time soon.
Maguire’s comments are a boost to Leeds and their desire to tie down Bielsa to a new deal, suggesting that the Argentine is a man of his word and is ready to put pen to paper on a new deal at Elland Road and that he is all “settled” in Yorkshire.
Simply put, a new contract for Bielsa must be Radrizzani’s priority given everything the manager has done in resurrecting the club over these past few seasons.
The Whites could splash out big money on new signings in the summer, but nothing will match the impact of getting Bielsa to stay for longer.
In other news, Ezgjan Alioski was a big disappointment against Arsenal…