Leeds United v Chelsea: Marcelo Bielsa press conference - Robin Koch, Pablo Hernandez, Jamie Shackleton and Pascal Struijk updates

ALL the latest as Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa faces the media ahead of Saturday lunch time's Premier League clash against Chelsea at Elland Road.

Thursday, 11th March 2021, 8:06 pm
FIRST MEETING: Between Whites head coach Marcelo Bielsa, left, and Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel, right. Graphic by Graeme Bandeira.

The two bitter rivals are meeting in a top-flight fixture in West Yorkshire for the first time since December 2003.

Whites head coach Marcelo Bielsa will be facing the media at 1pm and all the latest will follow here after the press conference's conclusion.

Team news - and how did Phillips and Rodrigo come through playing on Monday?

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"They are both good."

The difference in Chelsea under Tuchel?

"They are in a positive dynamic in terms of results and they have clear confidence in how they manage the ball."

On Raphinha's praise for you and loyalty

"I appreciate a lot Raphinha's position. But his reality is more to do with his own merits."

How do you go about breaking Chelsea down given their firepower at the other end too?

"We have to try to defend well and attack better than they do."

Hernandez and Struijk?

"No, neither of them will be able to play."

Is Pascal's injury bad/has it got worse? Just this weekend?

"The response I must give is that the progress of his evolution will show when he can return to competition. Given the injury that Pascal has, it is not a serious injury because various other players including himself have played with this injury, this is why I say it is not serious but whilst he is not here urgently I prefer that he has more time to recover completely."

Koch - will he feature for the under 23s on Monday?

"I think that he will. We would like to think so but I don't want to confirm because I don't want to say something which can turn out to be an error."

On Caprile over Casilla on the bench

"I received a notice from the institution that said that Caprile was given a place on the bench due to his performances, this is not a conclusion that I have said. When I make a decision on the presence or an absence of a player I don't explain the motives. What I do say is the truth. If it's because of injury then I say it is because of injury, in the case of Casilla and Caprile, of course I value Caprile, I also know the difference between one and the other and what I said to explain Casilla's absence was that he was not injured and that I decided that he would not participate and Caprile would. I think what I said is true and sufficient."

Players leaving in summer - how keep them motivated?

"What I think is that to play a game in the Premier League is a dream for the majority of players in the world - the same thing about the managers and the coaches. We dream of managing a game or a season or a period of time in this league. I don't think additional any motivation is needed. To celebrate playing a game in the Premier League, in this case in the shirt of Leeds United. "I understand where your question is coming from, but the answer that I give you represents the thoughts of all the players."

What learn from the defeat to Chelsea and games since?

"The game against Chelsea in its moment I analysed it and gave my conclusions. And if I am to be sincere and answer that question I would give you a full and sincere one. With respect to the last two defeats I also explained what I thought in the moment, I thought they were avoidable defeats that we were beaten by teams who were not superior to us on the field but to convert what you deserve into results is the job of a manager in general, In the game against Aston Villa we created one chance in dominating the whole second half so the critic that we had over our game was to convert the pressure into danger and in the second game we created seven goal scoring chances in the second half and didn't convert any and the critic is that we need to be efficient and capitalise on the danger we create so the focus on our offensive game has different ways of being observed. In general lines, or performance is positive because we create danger. The opposite happens on a defensive part, all of our players from defensive mid down have good performances but despite this we conceded a lot of goals. In the three aspects that I tell you, possession, danger, danger efficiency, individual performances and a defensive output, they are all within the things that I manage and I haven't managed to resolve, especially with the subject of receiving so many goals."

You received a suggestion that Caprile should be on the bench?

"What I said is that our press office, they informed me that there were quite a lot of questions asked about Casilla's absence and Caprile's involvement. He also said that they had responded that my decision had to do with the fact that Caprile had been performing very well in the trainings. After they told me that no they did not say this. I obviously believe in all the versions that they tell me because they are all with good intentions but what I do say, only I explain the decisions that I made and the arguments that I made to decide I prefer not to communicate them but just to communicate the decision. Evidently I must have expressed myself incorrectly for you to have understood that the club had indicated to me that I should have included Caprile which the club did not do of course. The respect that there is observed for each and every one's separate tasks here is complete."

On Roofe winning a league title and following ex players

"I follow how each player of the past here is doing and I am very happy that Roofe is able to win the Premier League in Scotland. And I regret that he was not able to participate in the last games due to a muscular problem."

1000 days in - did you think it would go this well?

"I always think that I am going to stay forever in all the jobs that I take and I go from day to day thinking I am going to be there for the rest of my life. But at the same time it is a profession that usually has interruptions. It is far more common that a manager is fired that he stays in a place for a very long time."

Any new injuries?

"No Shackleton is available now, Koch also, Berardi also. The players that are not available are Forshaw, Pablo and Pascal."

Caprile - will he be on the bench for a while now?

"For some time now I anticipate this squad because I receive this recommendation."

Can you not stay at Leeds as long as you want now?

"I don't think I have triumphed in this job, I think the word triumph is something that evades me. To have been promoted it was very difficult not to have achieved this because the level of the team deserved it and once we were in the Premier League if we had come to the Premier League in position 10, 9, 8, 7 or 6 or 5 to 10, to have achieved this would have been a valuable achievement. But we are not in these positions, we haven't regularly been in these positions so I don't think anyone can describe it is a successful and I don't think there are many managers in football that have the legitimacy to stay in a job as long as long s they like. There may be other coaches that have more merit than I do to aspire to that level but it's not my case, sincerely not my case."

On Klich's form

"For Klich in the first half of the games that have been played so far, he had his best performances but his physical numbers were not ideal. In the second half of the season that he has played, his physical values they have improved with regards to what he is able to do but his performances have been more sporadic. All the players have better or worse performances, better or worse physical performances and more or less progression from each game. In this Premier League it is difficult to be able to play good in all three aspects of physical, mental and football wise throughout the whole season. I have always said that Klich is a key player that can play in all three positions in midfield even if he is a midfielder who defends alongside the defensive mid and attacks alongside the offensive midfielder. He can play in the defensive mid or as an offensive midfielder and most recently he played in the most offensive position and there are very few players with these characteristics and even if he has an ideal position I give value a lot to the fact that he is played as an offensive midfielder and a defensive midfielder also because this allows us to resolve momentary circumstances throughout the fame. But this happens with many of our players like Dallas and Ayling but there are many players in our squad who haven't played in many positions."

On your former players going on to be coaches - how proud?

"I think that you have to look at this in the right way to say that you transcend and you had influence on these coaches.

"To look closely at Pochettino, he says he doesn't think he represents my ideas, something which is true.

"He has his own ideas, from which my point of view are better than mine.

"That indicates that to have managed a coach who is successful does not represent, does not mean that you have influenced his career as a coach. People like (Gerardo) Martino (Mexico boss), who is a great coach worldwide, he has also manifested himself in a similar way to Pochettino.

"Mauricio who is a player, someone who I admire a lot and worked closely with, he has always left it clear, even to myself, that he does not practice my ideas.

"Those who leave a legacy generate the desire in the other coaches to reproduce a style and to incorporate a method.

"And I guarantee you that if you observe it, nor the method or the style that I propose is the motive for someone to initiate.

"I always put the case of Guardiola and there will be others.

"For example, you saw the build-up phase from the goalkeeper to the defenders. "That is very habitual now.

"From my knowledge, which perhaps is insufficient, this is born from Guardiola and this for me is transmitting a legacy.

"There's another thing that transmits the importance of what Guardiola has done to express the managers that have influenced.

"Guardiola has generated a system to neutralise his style of play.

"He admits such superiority to the teams that he manages that the opponents think that the best way to avoid being defeated or to lose by a small number of goals is to start the recovery of the ball ten metres from your own box.

"This is a praise to the model or the style because the justification of all his colleagues is that we can't play like Guardiola because we don't have his players, so this is admissible.

"I don't agree with this, but I accept it.

"That he has built a squad, that he has created a style to avoid that his style prospers.

"That is a big, big praise for a coach, for a manager.

"Apart from that, the style that people adopt to avoid the style that he proposes has only one objective, to lose by a fewer amount of goals.

"That is a real praise to the style of a manager."

Five defeats in seven - how concerning

"It is a question without any content that you ask me and very difficult to answer apart from answering something empty because any team that loses 5 of the last 7 the response is of course I am very worried which is what I should say to hear you. From the last 7 we have lost 5 and I am very worried and to say next question. Normally those who have stats available are not able to evaluate what has happened because you have to analyse the 5 games and I do this every time we win and every time we lose. If you have receive some details and if you ask me a question based on those performances then I can give you an answer but if you say you have lost 5 games from 7 then of course the answer is I am worried."