'Lawless' - Leeds United hero Mark Viduka contrasts Marcelo Bielsa tenure with Peter Reid 'disaster'

Former Leeds United striker Mark Viduka has argued that current manager Marcelo Bielsa has reminded the club of the value of a good coach.

Saturday, 11th September 2021, 9:03 am
Marcelo Bielsa. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

The Australian striker was at Elland Road during the financial difficulties that marred the early part of the millennium, and has suggested that manager Peter Reid struggled to get a handle on things as they fell apart.

By contrast, Bielsa has finally taken the Whites back to the Premier League, and has helped to instil a renewed sense of optimism around the club.

Speaking to the Daily Mail about his spell with Leeds, Viduka said: “We didn’t have a clue of the financial problems, but then the likes of Woody [Jonathan Woodgate] were sold. It was a disaster. I was sent off in my last game, and that was frustration.

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“The team wasn’t being run how it should be. After David O’Leary was sacked [in 2002], we lost that aura. There wasn’t the same discipline.

“It wasn’t just Peter Reid, the whole club became lawless. If you have a squad worth millions, like ours, get a good coach. Someone who knows what he’s doing.

"Look at Marcelo Bielsa now. He has proved what a coach can achieve.”

Last season was Bielsa’s third in charge at Elland Road, and the Argentine was able to guide a squad largely consisting of players he had in the Championship to a ninth-placed Premier League finish.

As well as endearing himself massively to the home support, the 66-year-old has also won over swathes of neutral fans with his relentless, free-flowing brand of attacking football.