According to a report by the BBC, Leeds United have held further talks with Marcelo Bielsa about becoming their new manager after they sacked Paul Heckingbottom last Friday, and they hope to make an appointment by the end of the week.
The Yorkshire outfit and owner Andrea Radrizzani decided to relieve the 40-year-old of his duties after he picked up just four wins from his 16 Championship matches in charge, having been brought in from Barnsley to replace Thomas Christiansen in February.
It was a decision that would have been welcomed by frustrated Whites supporters after a 2017/18 campaign that began with them looking like serious promotion contenders, ended with a drab mid-table finish.
Radrizzani and director of football Victor Orta have made some poor decisions over the course of the last 12 months in particular, and while the latter will know that he needs to improve in terms of recruitment over the course of the next few weeks, the former will be more than aware that he needs to get his next managerial appointment spot on to regain the trust of the fans.
Bringing Bielsa, who should make an audacious move to sign a striker he knows well that who 20 goals in the 2017/18 campaign if he does get the job, to Elland Road would certainly be seen by many as a huge risk seeing as he is known for being a volatile character who uses an elaborate formation and style of play.
The Argentine boss quit his new job with Lazio just two days after taking it back in 2016, while he had a disastrous seven-month spell with Ligue 1 outfit Lille last term before they eventually narrowly avoided relegation to the second tier of French football.
The 62-year-old has had his success stories too however, including with Athletic Bilbao and Marseille, as well as with both the Argentina and Chile national teams.
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Tending to use a revolutionary and experimental 3-3-3-1 formation – which has a number of variations to it – Bielsa’s sides play a high-pressing game and can quickly transition between attacking and defending in numbers, and protect leads by flooding the central areas with six midfielders.
Despite his clear shortcomings, he is a genius in terms of some of his coaching practices – although it remains to be seen how they would fare over a long and tough 46-game Championship campaign – and there is little doubt that he could be a huge figure for Leeds next season and beyond.
Nuno Espirito Santo arrived at Wolverhampton Wanderers last summer having previously managed FC Porto, and while some may have doubted whether he would be a good fit for the Championship, he proved any critics wrong – albeit with a little help from super-agent Jorge Mendes in the transfer market.
That said, he used 3-4-2-1 and 3-4-3 formations to cruise to promotion to the Premier League, and he should take a huge amount of credit to get his team and his players – many of which were new to English football – gelling and playing as well as they did.
Bielsa can make a similar impact to the one that the Portuguese coach did in the Championship, and the Argentine could get the best out of the Leeds players that he will have at his disposal, as well as knowing the right additions to bring to Elland Road to boost their promotion push.
The 62-year-old is a big name in European football and that should also help bring well-known players to the Yorkshire outfit to help the likes of Samu Saiz and Ezgjan Alioski shine next term.
He will get the players working hard and the forwards firing, and if Radrizzani does pull off the huge coup of appointing the former Argentina and Chile manager, it will end up being the smartest decision he has made since he became Leeds United owner.