What Bielsa did during lockdown shows why Leeds must keep him for as long as possible – opinion

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Leeds United have finally done it.

After 16 years out in the cold, they’re back in the big-time, and as you would expect, the romantic articles documenting how it was done are being published on almost an hourly basis.

The insight that is being provided into the mind of Marcelo Bielsa through some of these pieces is simply staggering, but an article in The Athletic that revealed what the Argentine did during lockdown shows why Leeds must keep hold of him for as long as they possibly can.

What’s the story then?

The publication wrote a detailed and interesting look at how Bielsa had transformed the club, and while the piece was full of brilliant little anecdotes about El Loco, there was one story about what he did during lockdown that perfectly encapsulated why he’s such an incredible manager.

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“When Leeds asked Bielsa what he had done with his time during the lockdown, he told them he spent 19 hours watching Alfie McCalmont, a 20-year-old midfielder in their academy, to properly grade his potential.”

Keep him at all costs

Bielsa isn’t going to be at Leeds forever, but when he does eventually leave Elland Road, they’ll struggle to find another manager willing to put the sheer amount of time and effort in that the Argentine does.

The story talks about the 19-hours he watched of Alfie McCalmont, but there are also gems about an eight-page dossier on one Championship club’s third-choice goalkeeper and asking for non-league footage of Forest Green ahead of a pre-season friendly.

The 64-year-old is so committed to his craft, and if Leeds want their newly-upgraded academy to be used to it’s full potential, they have to keep El Loco for as long as possible.

We don’t know what conclusion he came to after watching so much footage of McCalmont, but the fact that he put that much time into a player who has appeared just twice this term, says a lot about how serious he is about developing these players, and if Leeds can keep him for a number of years, they will see the benefits.

Unfortunately, Bielsa isn’t one to stay in one place for too long, never spending more than three years at a club, but with The Athletic’s piece saying he was considering a third season at Elland Road even if they weren’t promoted, he may just want to stick around for a while.

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, FootballFanCast.com reports

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