Leeds United v Liverpool - press conference key points: Marcelo Bielsa on Raphinha involvement, team news and Liverpool

Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa will meet the media this afternoon ahead of a showdown with Liverpool at Elland Road.

Friday, 10th September 2021, 1:55 pm
Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

The Whites host the Reds on Sunday afternoon (4.30pm) in the Premier League as domestic action resumes following the international break.

We haven't heard from United's head coach since after the clash with Burnley at Turf Moor nearly two weeks ago.

A hot topic will be whether winger Raphinha will be available to play amid the ongoing dispute with the Brazil FA over Premier League players who failed to turn up for international duty.

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There will also be an update on team news and the thoughts of the Argentine on what is a tough test against Liverpool this weekend. It will also present an opportunity to hear from Bielsa on deadline-day signing Daniel James.

Bielsa will be speaking to the media via zoom at 1pm, we'll have all the latest from Thorp Arch below at the conclusion of today's press conference.

Here are the key points from Bielsa's press conference this afternoon...

Q: How pleased are you to have Daniel James? Will he play this weekend?

Bielsa: I think the decision to bring in James was the correct one by the club. He will be available this weekend. He is a player who can play either side, he combines his ability to unbalance the opponent and has passages into spaces considering his speed.

Q: Raphinha - how difficult has it been to plan with the uncertainty? Will he play?

The uncertainty wasn't a difficulty to prepare for the game. The position on whether he plays will depend on what the club transmits to me.

Q: What about Stuart Dallas, Junior Firpo and Mateusz Klich?

Bielsa: All three are available.

Q: And Robin Koch? Is he fit yet?

Bielsa: No, not yet.

Q: Liverpool offer a tough test this weekend...

Bielsa: To win is very important. Winning is always indispensable. There's always a motive to aim for the win that is very determined.

Q: Daniel James - how much better is he for the Man U experience?

Bielsa: Personally I can't say because I don't know him. It's been two years since the first contact I had with his game. He has maintained his characteristics in a higher competition.

Q: What emotion do you have seeing the crowd back at Elland Road?

Bielsa: The affection that the fans transmit in the Premier League at Elland Road you can see for yourself. Of course it makes you emotional and increases the desire to win the game.

Q: How do you see Daniel James, Raphinha and Jack Harrison playing together?

Bielsa: To begin with they do the same function. They are wide players who can play on the right or left. They're players who develop the game well out wide which is not an easy task. Throughout the season it is always necessary to have three or four players for one or two positions. To have added James and to keep Summerville gives us a good option.

Q: Can anything be done in the short-term about the international dispute?

Bielsa: Sincerely, I completely understand the position of the clubs. I understand completely the necessity of the national teams. When I worked in the national teams. We would play one game in every international break, then we started playing two and now three. It's a need. I can't imagine how we can resolve this because if you listen to the arguments of the owners of the players they have reason. And the managers of every nation the least they can hope for is that the regulations are met.