Marcelo Bielsa delivers Leeds United rallying call to fans amid injury crisis
Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds United press conference takes place at Thorp Arch this afternoon and you can follow his Chelsea preview below.Information Guide Nigeria
What have the medical team told you about the likelihood of any of the players needing surgery?
No, I didn’t ask for that information. As a result, I can’t tell you it. Obviously, because they’re more tendon injuries than from the muscle fibre we know that it’s not like the muscular injuries that are cured in one month.
How do you come to terms with the incessant injury news? How do you psychologically keep your chin up?
If you look over the statistics of the injuries for all of the teams, there’s a high percentage of teams with four absentees per fixture. Things happen to us, but things also happen to our opponents. And I find in the difficulties a justification and not because it’s a method because I feel that way. To say that the difficulties mean that the performance decreases, from my point of view that’s just choosing the easiest path.
Ayling – playing his best football before that injury? Southgate looking
When Ayling finds his match fitness, he’s a player, for me, of a very high level. When he plays consecutive games he acquires his best level quickly.
Better equipped with Forshaw to cover Phillips?
Forshaw has been a presence that has given fortitude to the team, Pascal also in that position, I also think Koch can be an excellent DM. In that sense, I try to develop what these players can contribute.
He can play as a CB, DM. He’s been out for a long time so the prep has been demanding. We think his form needs competition. In case we need him quicker, we would analyse the possibility of calling him up. Three conditions: healthy, fit physically and fine technically. After competitive rhythm, he gets it in the U23 games.
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Ayling – boost having him back?
He’s a versatile player. He can defend as a FB or CB. He’s got a lot of personality. He takes risks with the ball and he is especially optimistic and he transmits faith, energy to all of us. In the absence of Cooper, we can say he is a great captain.
I think he is improving. He can show a lot of his virtues and at the same time, there’s a lot of things he can do which he has not made evident yet.
How does their striker choice change your plans?
They are all similar. All centre-forwards. With different characteristics, but we’re not going to plan differently depending on who’s playing.
Thoughts on recent Chelsea performances?
The performance from yesterday was with a mixed squad. It does not represent their true strength. In the game against West Ham, which was a defeat, you have to watch and analyse if the result matches the performance. I don’t see a lowering in their play. You transmit to me what the Chelsea manager thinks, and if what you say is true, I am not one to say anything to the contrary. Nor do I feel it’s right to interpret his feelings if he looks at his own team. I only offer points of view from one more spectator. Yesterday’s team was not their habitual team and the result against West Ham, I’m not sure if it’s what they deserved.
Yesterday, we had to look at their XI. West Ham, sufficient data as to whether I am right or wrong.
Increase your resolve to do well – these problems?
I always think adversity is a stimulant to resolving situations. I understand there’s pessimism because the coming games are difficult, instead of bringing back players we are creating new absentees. When we play against big teams there’s an added strength, comes from the supposed weak one as the opportunity to win against a team, before playing them, is better. Football has that thing which is so attractive – allows for the hopes, fantasy that contradicts logical reasoning. My position is one of optimism and fortitude. It’s not a position that’s individual. It’s the conclusion I make by evaluating the mood of the team. I understand, in adversity, one response could be fatalism, but there is another option, the hope, the fight. I never say we are going to win, but I always say we are going to do the utmost to deserve to win.
Extra pressure to bring new players in January?
The injuries are in the tendons, not the muscles. Not in the fibre of the muscle. I want to be precise. It’s not they’re not muscular injuries, but they affect the tendon and not muscle fibres. Always averaged four players out, some short periods with five or six. In this moment, the absentees in attack would be Bamford and Rodrigo. For the trio defensively, it’s Cooper and Phillips. We are going to recover Koch and Gelhardt has given options in that position. Pascal also. Cresswell, when he’s had to play, has given positive responses. Tyler is evolving in the centre of the attack. Klich is also an option as an offensive midfielder. Forshaw has played as a DM before and done it well. Of course, we did not expect the problem of four injuries and have four new injuries, but I am always optimistic. I always work so the difficulties harm us as little as possible. In this case the same. With respect to signings: like I always say, any player the club is in conditions to sign better than what we have, it would be welcome, but we all know the difficulties of the winter market. It’s difficult to find players that are competing, that don’t have a place in the team they’re in. Normally those competing have a space within their team. Whether it’s economic viability, for those three conditions to be met is not simple.
Phillips – shoulder operation as well while he’s out?
I haven’t heard that information from the medical staff. It has common sense, what you just mentioned. If the time he needs to recover from this injury exceeds the recovery from his shoulder, that makes sense. As we don’t know how long he will take to recover from his current injury, I cannot apply my common sense to your enquiry.
Concerns for welfare of your players and staff amid Covid issues?
The processes to prevent them from being contaminated are already out there. We abide by them to the letter of the law. We hope there won’t be any new people contaminated.
Showing resilience needed to pick up points in coming games?
In each of the games we will face, they are all games where points are at stake. Whether that be drawing or winning. We will prepare ourselves with a lot of hope. The hopes and desires are increased because they are very good opponents. To be able to get points in those games has an added value and we are going to get to each of those games with a lot of desire.
Phillips back this year?
I have already answered. It’s all subject to the evolution of their injury. I can’t express myself any further in that sense.
Bielsa’s here – injury news?
The time they will be out for is subject to their evolution.
Welcome to our live coverage of Marcelo Bielsa’s latest press conference. The Leeds United head coach is facing questions ahead of the Premier League trip to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
Stay tuned as we bring you the vast majority of his comments right here.JAMB Result
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