Every Premier League game puts pressure on Leeds United, says Marcelo Bielsa ahead of Newcastle United clash
Marcelo Bielsa says the pressure facing Leeds United in tonight’s game at St James’ Park is ‘not superior’ to any of the games they have already played.
The Whites hunt their first win of the season on Friday evening against a Newcastle side who are seeking the same.
As Magpies coach Steve Bruce faces questions over his future, most supporters remain patient with the widely-trusted Marcelo Bielsa after a sluggish start.
The anxiety rumbling in some corners of the Leeds United fanbase is a consequence of the high bar Bielsa set last season, by the impressive early progress made on the Whites’ return to the Premier League, which has not been repeated at the second time of asking.
This time last year, Leeds had won two of their first four games, held Manchester City to a draw and come very close to snatching something from the title holders Liverpool. By all accounts, the Whites were punching well above their weight as top-flight newcomers.
It is worth remarking, however, that the two sides Leeds took early victories from, Fulham and Sheffield United, never looked like escaping the basement last season.
As such, the nature of the opponents Leeds have faced so far this term - of which three teams are in the top four - makes the two points taken from four games a respectable outcome. But to give weight to such an excuse marks out struggling Newcastle as a must-win game, a narrative which Marcelo Bielsa is keen to swerve.
In his pre-match press conference on Thursday, Marcelo Bielsa addressed the ‘test’ facing his players at St James’ Park as they continue the search for their first win of the season.
"So far this season we have played against Manchester United, Liverpool and Everton who are all high up in the table,” said Bielsa.
“And we played an opponent like Burnley who was also in need of points like us.”
The Argentine was handed a tough start to the season, and he knows it, though he is adamant that no one gets an easy ride in the Premier League.
“The difficulty of the next game is not superior to the games that I have just singled out,” he said.
“And I can assure you that no games played in the league will allow you to go for long periods of the competition without finding a game without any pressure."
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