Marcelo Bielsa offered no excuses for Leeds’s 7-0 humiliation by Manchester City, their joint heaviest defeat in the club’s 102-year history, the manager admitting this was the “worst result” of his four years in charge.
The defeat leaves Leeds with 16 points after 17 games and, adjusting to three points for a win, only in 1930‑31 have they had fewer at this stage of any league campaign (14).
Two goals from Kevin De Bruyne and one each from Phil Foden, Jack Grealish, Riyad Mahrez, John Stones and Nathan Aké meant Leeds matched their poorest margin, set previously when losing 8-1 against Stoke in 1934, 7-0 against West Ham in 1966 and 7-0 against Arsenal in 1979.
Asked if this was Leeds’ poorest Premier League display, Bielsa said: “Yes, of course. It’s not that City played very well – it’s a lot more noticeable how badly we played than how well City played. City plays like this all the time, or similar to it, but we have never played so badly in these four years.
“And I insist that the message is that what I proposed and what the game needed, was not good enough. You can deflect the attention when some things work and some things don’t but when nothing works, it is the decisions of the one in charge that defines what happens.
“As there’s nothing to take from it, it’s inevitable I have to take responsibility for a defeat of this type. There is nothing positive to take away from our performance. I can’t find anything that can be valued.
“It’s not the individuals that fail, but the organization. There is no justification I can offer. The game was exactly how we thought it was going to be, we prepared ourselves to avoid everything that happened. But we didn’t manage to do anything so their superiority wouldn’t be so noticeable.”
A delighted Pep Guardiola said: “Congratulations to the team. It was a good performance from us. The vibes of the stadium was nice today and we started incredibly well. We were patient with the ball and the quality of the players did the rest.”
Guardiola tried to be kind to City’s downed opponents. “We lost five points last season when playing Leeds. The players thought it was a more serious team than people think. I know how the manager conducts his team. Maybe they were tired having played 1-2 days ago.”
Source: The Guardian