Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa opens up on Arsenal game plan
Video LoadingVideo UnavailableClick to playTap to playThe video will start in8CancelPlay nowSign up to FREE email alerts from Mirror – Arsenal FCSubscribeWhen you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters. Sometimes they’ll include recommendations for other related newsletters or services we offer. OurPrivacy Noticeexplains more about how we use your data, and your rights. You can unsubscribe at any time.Thank you for subscribingWe have more newslettersShow meSee ourprivacy noticeInvalid Email
Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa has vowed not to turn his back on the beautiful game.
The Yorkshire club’s promising start to the season has been derailed by three defeats in four games – including successive 4-1 pummelings at the hands of Leicester and Crystal Palace.
But Bielsa insists he will not change his attacking philosophy ahead of today’s clash with Arsenal at Elland Road – and that he is committed to a style that gambles high risk against high reward.
Bielsa said: “Someone said that the players should not forgive me for the way I made them play in the last two games.
“But we need to continue to attack well – and to reduce the errors caused by us doing that.
“We need to not lose the ball in our own half, to finish the attack in the opposition half so there is no counter attack.
Marcelo Bielsa will remain loyal to his principles
(Image: Pool via REUTERS)
Mirror Football email – sign-up for all the latest news and transfer headlines
Get the latest news straight into your inbox!
It has been a hectic season so far – so make sure you don't miss a single thing by signing up for the brilliant new Mirror Football newsletter!
All the latest transfer news and big stories will land straight into your inbox. You won't miss out.
To sign up, put your email at the top of this article or follow the instructions on this link.
“We need to press in the opposition half so they don’t get into ours very easily. That’s what we have to look at.
“What would I do if our style doesn’t get results? Should we go long every single time? Only attack if the opponent makes a mistake? Instead of pressing in their half, wait with 11 behind the ball?
“Trying to attack is what the fans want and you have to try and be efficient with the style you choose.
“Any manner allowing you to win is good and any circumstance when it doesn’t go well is considered bad.
“But I take risks so the game can be beautiful. Taking another option would mean I don’t care and that I will only go whichever way makes it possible to win.”
Bielsa is a control freak who likes to tailor his game plan to combat the opponents’ strengths.
The Whites have lost their last two games
The hectic Premier League schedule has left him with minimum time for analysis.
He added: “You have to pick a way. It doesn’t mean what I am saying is the right way – but you just have to pick a way.
“To construct a style of play takes a long time and to destroy it only takes one moment.
“You have to look at the game (against Aston Villa) when we won 3-0 and the two defeats and the reasons.
“There was 10 days between those three games. The anxiety and despair is bad enough with two defeats but there was also no time to analyse what happened.
“That doesn’t mean I am trying to defend me or Leeds because of these two defeats.”
Leeds took on Arsenal in the FA Cup last season
(Image: Getty Images)
Jack Harrison will play his 99th game for Leeds after joining the club on loan from Manchester City in 2018.
There is a £10million deal in place for the move to become permanent if their return to the top-flight extends beyond this season.
And Bielsa said: “Harrison has already demonstrated what he’s capable of.
“I think the most important thing for him is to evaluate his development and not think too much about which team he belongs to.
“I hope that Leeds can keep him. If that’s not the case, the options for Harrison are going to be important responding to his quality and what he deserves.”