Bielsa spoke with his usual calm for almost an hour at the official presentation of the Arechabaleta project. Photo: video capture.
A moment that defines it from end to end. Through a video of almost an hour, Rosario Marcelo Bielsa confirmed and argued his decision to return to being the manager of Athletic Bilbao se Inaki Arechabaleta It imposes itself in the presidential elections to be held next Friday to determine its replacement Aitor Elizegand at the head of the Basque club.
Arechabaleta presented his government project this Monday with which he will try to overcome the other two candidates, Ricardo Barkala and Jon Uriarteand its key piece is the Crazywhich he defined as “the most revered and respected coach by professionals in the world”.
What did Bielsa say? He argued, as usual, his decision to accompany the management of Arechabaleta, after having analyzed it 90 games of the different teams representing the Basque club: saw “the 45” that Athletic played in La Liga last season, as well as the 38 of Bilbao Athletic – its subsidiary team -, 4 of Basconia and 3 of Juvenil.
“Plus the 380 matches of the Spanish league that give us a global idea of the competition”Bielsa specified, as if it had not reached the aforementioned.
That was necessary for “to make decisions” in about a short time “40 players” that initially he would have available in the first team, those on loan, the players transferred with play-off clauses and the players of Bilbao Athletic who are about to expire their contract.
He also commented that the first thing he said to Arechabaleta was “let me see, let me evaluate” and that, after doing so, he told him that “the team plays well” and that it seemed to him that the best thing was that the previous coach continued, Marcelino Garcia Toral. It was just like that “after Marcellin’s declaration” when he greeted when he considered accepting Arechabaleta’s proposal.
From the point of view of the Argentine manager, who had his first public appearance after being fired from Leeds United in England, Athletic deserved last season to finish in front of eighth place which he got. “He should have been closer to Sevilla, Betis and Real Sociedad. Being fifth would have been normal and being sixth would have been normal.”he thought, convinced that Athletic did it “resources to get what you deserve”.
The Argentine coach Marcelo Bielsa during a training session of the Athletic Club de Bilbao at the Lezama headquarters. Photo: EFE / Alfredo Aldai.
Although it is “glad” with the squad that would have Bielsa spoke with Arechabaleta about the possibility of a reinforcement “one or two places on campus”.
Bielsa believes that this Atletico has a “quality comparable to the previous one” which he directed in the early 2010s, but that too “there are more players” high level then.
“I inherited in Bilbao ten years ago a great team that built Caparrós, but the current one is more similar to the aspects that I have tried to convey to my team than that of Caparrós. Team very well worked by Marcelino “insured.
The coach del Rosario (21-07-1955) revolutionized not only Athletics but also the city for two seasons (2011-2012 and 2012-2013) and in the first reached the Europa League and Copa del Rey finalsin which he lost to the Atletico Madrid Y Barcelona.
An iconic photo: Marcelo Bielsa and Pep Guardiola face off in a duel between Bilbao and Barcelona during the 2011-2012 season. Photo: REUTERS / Albert Gea.
After the defeat of that last game, at the Vicente Calderón, thousands of Athletic fans greeted their team with the cry that “crazy, crazy, crazy, live better”in a clear demonstration of support for the manager from Rosario, less successful in the second season, as has happened several times in the course of his career.
Finally, Bielsa recalled the “the golden rule” What remains of his first experience in the Basque team: “Healthy competition for position improves the team”. “Avoiding disunited conflicts always benefits the team. It is a golden rule in Athletic to always prioritize the group, whatever it has to pay”appreciated.
Arechabaleta, who offered it to him a two-year contract the coach del Rosario was confident for his performance in the elections and saved the overall project, beyond the fact that the figure of Bielsa monopolizes the favorites.
After leaving Bilbao in 2013, Bielsa worked at the Olympic Marseille French in 2014. After a season he resigned, assuring that there were differences with the sports management and later came to the Italian Laziowhere he just went two days after taking.
In 2017 he returned to Ligue 1 to lead the Lilaceven though his experience wasn’t entirely fruitful, and in June 2018 he signed up for leedclub with which he was promoted to the Premier League and from which he was sacked for poor results at the beginning of this 2022.