Leeds United coach Marcelo Bielsa plays down Steve Bruce cabbage 'attack': "I don't see it as barbaric"

Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa.
Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa.
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Marcelo Bielsa described himself as “having bad habits” after admitting he did not class as “barbaric” the Aston Villa supporter who threw a cabbage at Steve Bruce in midweek.

Bruce was the target of a vegetable brought into Villa Park before a 3-3 draw with Preston North End on Tuesday, the final game of his fractious reign as the Birmingham club’s manager.

The former Manchester United defender was sacked by Villa less than 24 hours later following mixed results and a serious breakdown in the relationship between him and the crowd.

The protest with the cabbage made national news on Tuesday night but Bielsa, who cut his managerial teeth in the heated world of Argentinian football, said it had not caused him any great sense of outrage.

“I don’t see this is as barbaric as you see it,” the Leeds United head coach said. “This means I have bad habits and you have good habits.”

Bielsa touched on his experience of dealing with hostile crowds in other countries before Leeds’ 1-1 draw at Millwall last month, a traditionally volatile fixture by English standards.

Argentina, in contrast, has experienced such severe problems with football violence that away fans have been banned from games by the country’s football association for the past five years.

Speaking a month ago, Bielsa said: “I've been insulted in my career, I've been spat at and had bottles thrown at me but never anything serious happened to me.

“What I can say is that I don’t have any problem with tolerating the atmosphere. I don’t want to play the role of the victim. We have to admire how fans love their club. England has been the country which tried to eradicate violence in football.”