MX23RW : Tuesday, December 11 05:16:57

Marcelo Bielsa unconcerned by fears Leeds may implode again

Defeat at home to Birmingham sparked suggestions Leeds’ form could dip like last season.

Marcelo Bielsa has shrugged off suggestions Leeds are ready to implode as they did last season in the Sky Bet Championship.

Bielsa’s side lost for the first time in the league this season at the weekend against Birmingham, which ended their eight-game unbeaten start.

Saturday’s shock defeat prompted fears of a repeat of their decline at the same stage of the 2017/18 campaign, but Bielsa remains unconcerned.

“It’s very difficult to make any comparison because I was not here last year,” he said. “I know what happened last year, I know what you are trying to underline.

“But I don’t think it’s good to compare both situations. The good idea is to resolve this situation right now.”

Leeds will bid to bounce back with victory in Friday’s Yorkshire derby at Sheffield Wednesday, which would keep them top of the table.

“We always try to be consciously optimistic and we have solid arguments to build optimism. We’ll have to show that next Friday,” the Argentinian said.

“You don’t react in the same way after a win than after a loss. After the game we lost, we asked some questions together. We built our conclusions together.

“We have had so far two training sessions where each player can express himself. The conclusions are positive ones and I have a lot of hope for Friday’s game.”

Bielsa said he will not make any changes at Hillsborough and repeated his claim that none of his players were to blame for Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Elland Road.

The former Argentina and Chile coach instead took full responsibility for last week’s setback, admitting he had adopted the wrong playing system.

Leeds could be unchanged for the fourth successive Championship fixture, meaning fit-again midfielder Adam Forshaw will again start on the bench after recovering from a foot injury.

“Adam is ready to play,” added Bielsa, who confirmed none of his injured players will return in time to face Wednesday.

“(Patrick) Bamford and (Izzy) Brown (both knee) won’t be with us for a long time.

“(Kemar) Roofe (calf) is close to the first team, not immediately, but he’s close. (Gaetano) Berardi (knee) and Pablo (Hernandez, knee) also are close to the first team, but not as close as Roofe.”


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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Norwich CityNorwich21134438241443
2Leeds UnitedLeeds21126335181742
3Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd21114634241037
4Derby CountyDerby2111463124737
5West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom21106544301436
6Middlesbrough219932314936
7Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest21810332221034
8Aston Villa218854132932
9Birmingham CityBirmingham217953025530
10Stoke CityStoke217952725230
11Blackburn RoversBlackburn217952731-430
12Swansea CitySwansea218582523229
13Bristol City218582524129
14Queens Park RangersQPR218492531-628
15Preston North EndPreston216783235-325
16Wigan AthleticWigan2174102329-625
17Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds216692738-1124
18Brentford215793332122
19Hull City2156102130-921
20Rotherham UnitedRotherham214982132-1121
21Millwall2147102635-919
22Reading2146112634-818
23Bolton WanderersBolton2146111529-1418
24Ipswich TownIpswich2118121737-2011

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