MX23RW : Tuesday, December 1 03:12:57| >> :120:6413:6413:

Marcelo Bielsa: 'Leaky Leeds defence is down to attacking commitment'

Marcelo Bielsa: 'Leaky Leeds defence is down to attacking commitment'
© Reuters
No team has conceded more goals in the Premier League this season than Leeds.

Marcelo Bielsa has admitted Leeds' leaky defence in the Premier League has been a consequence of their commitment to attack.

Leeds have conceded more goals than any other side bar West Brom in the top flight this season and Bielsa has offered a detailed explanation before Sunday's home game against Arsenal.

"We have conceded 17 goals. The team who has conceded the least has conceded nine goals," said Bielsa following his forensic analysis of his side's first eight matches.

Bielsa has offered a forensic analysis of Leeds' defensive performance
Bielsa has offered a forensic analysis of Leeds' defensive performance (Michael Regan/PA)

"You can't analyse a team's defensive form unless you analyse the offensive performance. To say this in another manner, it is very easy to defend well if you decide not to attack."

Leeds appear to have come unstuck after their impressive start to life back in the big time as successive 4-1 defeats to Leicester and Crystal Palace have seen them slip to 15th place in the table.

But Bielsa indicated that rather than compromise his footballing philosophy, his side would be focusing on converting more of their own chances.

"One of the conclusions which comes from the observation, is that Leeds and Liverpool are the teams that create the most danger in the league," he said.

"Or Leeds are in the top three (of those) who create the most danger in the criteria that we analysed.

"We have an important amount of goals, which situate us in the middle of the table. I'm saying that we create danger, but when you create danger you need efficiency and accuracy."

The Argentinian said he was satisfied that conceding goals from free-kicks, crosses into the box, long balls from the opponents' own half and throw-ins had not been a problem this season.

"From the 17 goals we have conceded there were four penalties, which were doubtful, preventable and that could have been avoided, that are not linked to structural mistakes," he said.

"We conceded three own goals and one goal which was conditioned by something that was preventable. Through these eight goals it's impossible to generate conclusions which then have solutions.

"If we hadn't conceded those eight goals, which are not linked to how solid we have been defensively, we would be the team who has conceded the least goals in the Premier League."

Bielsa said that the English top flight contained "40 of the best forwards in the world" and that his side's defensive system depended heavily on pressing in their opponents' half.

He added: "I have to make the analysis that I have just commented on. That there are eight goals linked to things which we can't control, that our offensive style, our offensive game has sometimes consequences which causes us to suffer goals."

Leeds' bid for a fourth league win of the season has been boosted by the return of midfield lynchpin Kalvin Phillips against Arsenal.

Phillips has recovered from a shoulder injury and although Pablo Hernandez has been ruled out due to a minor muscle strain, club record signing Rodrigo is also back in contention.


Click here for more stories about Marcelo Bielsa

Click here for more stories about Arsenal

Share this article now:
Did you know...?
Rio Ferdinand pictured with then-Leeds chairman Peter Risdale in November 2000
Read Next:
On This Day in 2000 - Rio Ferdinand becomes world's most expensive defender
Latest Sports Video
Sports Mole Logo
Enter your email address to subscribe to Sports Mole's free daily transfer newsletter! Sent twice a day during the transfer window.

rhs 2.0
Todays Game Header Right
Champions League
Primeira Liga
League One
League Two
National League
National League North
National League South
Belgian Pro League
NIFL Premiership
Welsh Premier League
Segunda Division
Ligue 2
Eerste Divisie
Copa Libertadores
Copa Sudamericana
Argentine Primera Division
Liga MX
AFC Champions League
J1 League
1Tottenham HotspurSpurs106312191221
4Leicester CityLeicester106041914518
5West Ham UnitedWest Ham105231711617
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves105231111017
9Manchester UnitedMan Utd95131616016
10Aston Villa95042013715
11Manchester CityMan City94321511415
12Leeds UnitedLeeds104241517-214
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle104241215-314
15Crystal Palace104151215-313
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton102441416-210
18West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom10136718-116
20Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd10019416-121

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!