Report: Marcelo Bielsa lined up by Atlanta United
Now this is something that would not only break the hearts of Leeds United fans but it would surely delight supporters of reigning MLS champs Atlanta United.
A report from Paul Newberry of the Associated Press claims that Atlanta United want one of Marcelo Bielsa or Guillermo Barros Schelotto to take over from outgoing head coach Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino.
The Argentine coach took charge of ATL’s first two years as an MLS franchise but Martino announced he is leaving this month, and he is expected to be named the new head coach of the Mexican national team.
Bielsa is known to be a close friend of Martino, but does this link make sense?
Right now the eccentric Argentina coach has a sleeping giant, Leeds, in second place in England’s second tier and many believe the Elland Road club are the favorites for promotion to the Premier League this season.
However, a report from the Daily Telegraph states that Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani could be having money issues as his sports streaming company, Eleven Sports, is on the brink of shutting down.
“Radrizzani’s sports streaming service is at risk of shutting down after only four months amid growing doubts over the financial viability of the company. It is understood that the 44-year-old Italian businessman has been unsuccessfully attempting to renegotiate deals with established pay-TV operators but Eleven Sports is now considering pulling the plug on its UK company. Telegraph Sport understands there could now be added pressure on Leeds to achieve promotion this season due to fears over cash-flow issues.”
Would this situation force Bielsa to leave Leeds before the end of the season? Probably not. It seems likely that the pressure will be cranked up on him to achieve promotion though as Radrizzani, Leeds’ majority owner since May, will need to deliver the huge riches promotion to the Premier League brings to continue to bankroll the club.
Bielsa does have a reputation for jumping ship pretty quickly when he does decide he’s had enough at a particular club or if things that were promised to him do not come to fruition. That said, this would still be a huge shock.
Then again, Atlanta shocked many with hiring Martino in the first place and since then the signings of Josef Martinez, Miguel Almiron, Barco and now Gonzalo ‘Pity’ Martinz.