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Leeds players were 'over-trained' under Bielsa & 'stress levels were incredibly high', claims Marsch

3:29 am AEST 13/4/22
Jesse Marsch Leeds 2021-22
The American may have steadied the ship at Elland Road, but has candidly admitted that his job is a bigger one than expected

Jesse Marsch believes Leeds United's injury woes this season came down to predecessor Marcelo Bielsa's methods, with the American noting the "stress" left in the Argentine's wake.

The former RB Leipzig boss succeeded Bielsa at Elland Road following the latter's dismissal, with the club missing key faces through a slew of fitness problems and facing a fearsome relegation battle.

Marsch has since steadied the ship, and helped to breathe new energy into the Whites, but now he admits that his task has been a difficult one given the atmopshere he inherited.

What has been said?

"I could see from just watching games from afar, and talking to people within the club, that the stress levels were incredibly high," Marsch told talkSPORT. "You could see it in their faces. You could see in the 15th minute that some of them were already at the max – and that shouldn’t be the case.

"The injury issue, for me, had a lot to do with the training methodology. These players were over-trained and it led to them being physically, mentally, emotionally and psychologically in a difficult place to recover from week to week, game to game. 

"I have a very specific methodology with the way I work and I’ve had a reputation for high running data, but also having healthy, fit, strong players who can meet the standards of the game we want."

Marsch admits difficulties in tactical transition

While fortunes look to have turned a corner, the American has admitted that it has been a tough task reshaping a Leeds team defined by Bielsa's characteristic style, which he paid tribute to while acknowledging the struggles faced to replace it.

"Marcelo had such a strong man-v-man playing style," he added. "Trying to rip the players away from three-and-a-half years of being instructed to do exactly that, transitioning into what we’re trying to do, has been massively challenging for the players to adapt to. 

“They’ve worked really hard at it, but they still fall into bad habits, especially when they’re fatigued on the pitch. It’s normal."

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