Leeds United owners call meeting with Jesse Marsch and squad ahead of Brighton clash

Leeds United's owners held a meeting with the players and Jesse Marsch on Thursday ahead of Sunday's massive game against Brighton.

By Graham Smyth
Friday, 13th May 2022, 1:46 pm

The Whites are majority owned by Italian media mogul Andrea Radrizzani, with 49ers Enterprises, the financial backers of the NFL's San Francisco 49ers holding a 44 per cent stake.

Paraag Marathe, president of 49ers Enterprises, is vice chairman at Leeds and has been at Elland Road this week, attending the Chelsea game on Wednesday night. Jed York, CEO of the 49ers, is likely to fly in over the next few days as the club's 2022/23 destination is sealed.

Marsch says the support of the ownership has been crucial for him in what has become an increasingly difficult job keeping Leeds up. Going into the weekend they sit in the relegation zone, level on points with Burnley above them but with an almost insurmountable goal difference deficit. The Clarets take on Spurs, away from home, at 12pm on Sunday before Leeds' 2pm clash with the Seagulls at Elland Road. Relegation could be all-but certain by 4pm but Marsch says the Leeds owners are right behind him and his side as they attempt to take the fight to the very last game on May 22.

"We had actually ownership speak to the team yesterday, they were all totally unified," said Marsch.

"That part I love about being here. I think it was one of the reasons I told you from the beginning why I came here. It's because I believed in the people and the people believed in me. In difficult moments, I've been really impressed. I've been really impressed with Victor [Orta, director of football], with Angus [Kinnear, CEO], with Andrea, with Paraag, with everybody's ability to stay together, unified, supportive. That part's been awesome, and it allows me to focus on what I need to do to get the job done with our team."

According to Marsch the thrust of the meeting was to reiterate that it is within the squad's power to keep themselves in the division and that the ownership believes in them.

"I think they just tried to say that we have everything still in our grasp, and that our ability to recover and go again and believe - I think there was a lot of talk about belief, right? So it was a lot of the things that they said I think fit with things that I've said already to the team, without me communicating [to the owners] every day exactly what I'm saying to the team. So that also lets you know that there's real alignment here. So, again, that's incredibly helpful."

TOTAL UNITY - Jesse Marsch says Andrea Radrizzani and the Leeds United ownership are unified in their support of the team as the relegation battle nears its climax. Pic: Getty