Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa may have suffered a major transfer howler as news emerges from behind the scenes at Elland Road about Robin Koch.
The Germany international only arrived in the summer from Bundesliga side Freiburg, but has seen his debut campaign in the Premier League be disrupted heavily by injuries – he’s played just 14 times in the top-flight.
Now, Football Insider claim that Bielsa fears the centre-back doesn’t have what it takes to be a real success in the Premier League, and that while he regards him as a fine player, there is a real hole in his game.
The report suggests that “there is a sense at Thorp Arch he is ‘too soft’ to thrive in the Premier League” and that he “doesn’t like the aerial challenges” – it’s even claimed that “this weakness is considered by the coaching staff to be a major issue”.
While Koch certainly hasn’t been helped by the fact injuries have plagued his first season in English football, it’s a damning indictment on his ability that Bielsa and Leeds’ coaching staff already feel he might not be cut out for the Premier League.
Given that the Whites spent around £13m to beat Tottenham to his signing in the summer, the news that the club feel like they may have made a mistake, or at least not done their homework properly on him in scouting him, surely won’t have Andrea Radrizzani happy.
The Leeds owner splashed the cash in bringing Koch and fellow centre-back Diego Llorente into the club in order to reinforce the centre of defence ahead of the Whites’ return to the Premier League.
For the club to now have second thoughts on one of their big-money acquisitions just months into his career at Elland Road must surely go down as a major howler.