Leeds United's Chasing Back in The 92nd Minute Against Crystal Palace Is Incredible
Leeds United provided the perfect summary of Marcelo Bielsa's demands in the 92nd minute against Crystal Palace last night.
2-0 up in stoppage time courtesy of goals from Jack Harrison and Patrick Bamford, the Elland Road outfit's energy levels and work-rate did not wane in the closing stages.
Bielsa's philosophy requires constant work off the ball and his players have quite clearly bought into it. After possession changed hands in the Palace box, the ball was with Eberechi Eze as he looked to counter.
But while he tried to advance with the ball, as many as FIVE Leeds players sprinted back in. With pressure on him, Eze gave the ball away and Leeds' skipper Liam Cooper duly collected it.
The incredible clip of Leeds' players chasing in the dying embers has blown up on social media, with fans in awe at the effort and desire to regain possession even at the end of a routine win.
Under Bielsa, every player must press relentless and that means that striker Bamford is the first defender.
After scoring his 100th career goal, he told Sky Sports about what he's asked to by his manager.
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"Non-stop running, your first job is to defend," he said.
"Pressing their defence makes reading the game easier for our defence. I can't lie I can't do it for 90 minutes, it's very demanding."
Bielsa's training sessions are frighteningly intense, with the Argentine regularly asking his players to partake in a game of 'Murderball' on a Wednesday.
It's as crazy as it sounds; the drill is a hyper-intense, fast-paced practice match where there is no referee and the ball is always in play.
Liam Cooper told SPORTbible the session is "very chaotic", while Bamford reckons it's "ten times harder than a Premier League game".
"That's the real blowout of the week and I'm not joking you, that's about ten times harder than a game," Bamford told talkSPORT.
"It's setting you up for the weekend ahead, or the next match, and you're playing against the shapes the other team uses.
"It might be six blocks of five minutes but playing at full throttle. Everyone is screaming and shouting, you can't stop, you have to press all the time and when the ball goes out of play it's just straight back in.
"There's no rest whatsoever, and between the blocks there's only a short break to have a drink. It's hectic!"
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