Bielsa picks out two Leeds stars for praise following important victory


Marcelo Bielsa praised Leeds United players Diego Llorente and Jamie Shackleton following the 1-0 victory over Watford.

The Whites were desperate for three points going into the match, having gone their first six games without a win. Spanish centre-back Llorente opened the scoring in the 18th minute.

He was on hand to poke home from inside the box after a corner deflected off Watford’s Juraj Kucka.

Xisco Munoz’s men couldn’t equalise, despite having some chances to do just that. Summer signing Ozan Tufan blazed over after snatching the ball in the Leeds box.

The Hornets also had a goal ruled out in the second half. A corner was whipped in, which Illan Meslier seemed to deal with.

But the Frenchman dropped the ball under pressure from Watford players and saw the ball roll into his net.

The referee gave a free-kick to the home side, against the wishes of their opponents.

After the win, Bielsa told reporters: “We defended well and the result, even though it was only a one-goal difference, was never in danger.

“We should have scored more goals because we had a lot of chances – at least 10 – in the second half, perhaps a little bit less, but I thought it was a fair result. The difference could have been bigger.

“[Diego Llorente] had a performance without any errors with a lot of good things while defending and distributing the ball.

“Jamie Shackleton had a good performance. We didn’t make errors in our own half, we didn’t allow counter-attacks and even if we lacked efficiency, we had patience to see how we could generate chances at goal.”


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Munoz reacts to uninspiring defeat

Bielsa’s counterpart Munoz said after the game: “They won all duels, shot more than us. They wanted to win the game more than us.

“It’s important we keep working hard. [We] need to improve set-pieces. [We] receive a lot of goals this way.

“Leeds [are] number one with intensity and velocity. All the numbers. It’s true, but [I’m] disappointed with [the] first half. Second half was little more, but with our capacity it was poor in attack.

“Only we can say the same. [We] work every day because it’s important for all points in the Premier League.”

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