Leeds United must attack the Premier League but in sensible fashion - David Prutton

WHEN you think about what Marcelo Bielsa has done, I think it’s absolutely imperative that he stays on as head coach.
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You have got to sometimes take into account the idiosyncrasies of the man himself, his age and whether that could have anything to do with it.

But Marcelo seems to have a genuine sense of affection for the place and it would seem to me that he would want to stay at Leeds United.

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Money is probably not really an issue but he’s certainly in a wonderful bargaining position now to say ‘if you want me to stay then show me how much you want me to stay’.

CLASS ACT: Ben White, pictured celebrating his stunning strike in Leeds United's 4--0 win at home to Charlton Athletic. Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images.CLASS ACT: Ben White, pictured celebrating his stunning strike in Leeds United's 4--0 win at home to Charlton Athletic. Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images.
CLASS ACT: Ben White, pictured celebrating his stunning strike in Leeds United's 4--0 win at home to Charlton Athletic. Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images.

That’s not just with money but in being able to recruit as well and who he deems relevant, helpful or beneficial for what Leeds require – which is first and foremost staying in the Premier League.

Secondly, it’s then flourishing there.

You can look at ways that clubs attack the Premier League because that’s what you have got to do.

You can’t be scared and you can’t be timid.

I’m not saying you have to go gung ho and leave yourself wide open but after being away from it for so long, to go back down with a whimper would really undo all the hard work they have done.

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I think that to think that Leeds would go back and do what Sheffield United have done would be unrealistic.

I understand that people would do the comparison of the sizes of the two clubs et cetera but what Sheffield United have done has been phenomenal.

They have shone a light on the way to play football but there is chemistry and magic ingredients in that and players that have been together for a very long period of time and worked their way up.

And then they have spent money and broken their transfer record and even then those new players have taken their time to settle in.

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The other side of it is you do a Norwich City, who are very frugally run and financially a well-run football club.

If they go up then it’s fantastic and it’s wonderful and if they come down it’s not an absolute disaster, financially.

And you would like to think from Leeds’ point of view that it’s once bitten twice shy because I was obviously there when they didn’t have a pot to their name.

That’s what happens down the line of mismanagement, you end up with wallies like me playing for you and that’s not the sole cautionary tale.

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The Leeds fans who have been there through thick and thin who are deservedly glorifying in what’s happened, they want League One and the Championship to be a distant memory in five years’ time.

It needs to be do you remember that time when we played teams down there and look at what we are now because we have built it in a very sensible and financially sound way. And on the back of all this there is the pandemic to think about.

Because of that, how much money will Leeds have to spend and will they want to go in deep with players or will they get priced out of it because of the size of the club and because of what people perceive them to be.

The dynamics of it is a myriad and confusing but whatever they need to do to give them a bigger first footprint back in the Premier League as possible, within reason, they should do.

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Brighton and Hove Albion defender Ben White is obviously one of the main targets and Leeds have a head start in the relationship which they have with him.

Geographically, it has got to work for him and it seems that he has really found a home with Leeds.

The development of the player has been phenomenal, really.

He has been a calming and steady influence and he’s still such a young age and when you see a player like that with that type of maturity then you can understand why he is mentioned in despatches with the bigger clubs.

Manchester City has been mentioned and maybe Leeds fans will be buzzing for City to get the Nathan Ake deal over the line as maybe then that club is not an avenue for Ben for the time being.

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But Leeds have stolen a march on other potential employers because he knows exactly what the place is like.

The flip side of it is does he go to an established Premier League side who can pay more for him and also bigger wages and that has got to come into the equation. Yes it’s about development and yes it’s a career that he wants to look back on in 15 or 20 years time.

But there’s also the ability to provide for family and those that he knows and loves and that will come into it too.

There’s huge potential there and if you told me that Harry Maguire, the big lad that was at the back when I played against him in my final game as a professional in League One was going to be a World Cup scoring centre-back I’d have probably disagreed with you slightly.

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But it’s the same with Kalvin Phillips in that Gareth Southgate will be very aware of these players but you have got to see them tested in the Premier League first.

We know the Championship is tough but the Premier League is a quantum leap in terms of quality.

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Thank you Laura Collins