Leeds reportedly want Chelsea player that labelled Bielsa 'crazy' in 2018
Michy Batshuayi is reportedly on the firing list at Chelsea as the striker enters the final 12 months of his contract. Leeds United are reportedly keen to sign the Belgium Euro 2020 star this summer, forming a reunion with Marcelo Bielsa. He once labelled the Leeds boss as “crazy”, back in 2018.
Batshuayi, 27, is likely to want to end his Chelsea nightmare this summer. Joining the Blues in 2016, he has scored 25 goals in 77 games. But the ex-Standard Liege striker has been on loan four times – most-recently a second stint on loan at Crystal Palace, where he scored just two goals in 18 games.
The Telegraph have claimed that Batshuayi is a target for Leeds. Batshuayi scored 11 goals in 29 games under Bielsa during the Argentine gaffer’s time at Marseille, which lasted for the 2014-15 season – and the first game of the 2015-16 campaign. Batshuayi is likely to be available for a small-ish fee.
Speaking to French magazine Onze Mondial, Batshuayi spoke of his time at Marseille under Bielsa. He spoke about how he did not appreciate his lack of one-to-one meetings with Bielsa – but with hindsight, he realises that Bielsa knew which players he needed to speak to, among other stories.
“He didn’t speak to me, he never spoke to me,” Batshuayi said in 2018. “It annoyed me because I was doing sick training, I worked like crazy, but he didn’t talk to me. And yet, he took other people all the time to talk to them. In fact, it is all or nothing. Either he picks you up and talks to you for 40 minutes, or he doesn’t talk to you at all. But looking back, I tell myself that he knew who to do this with.
“Some needed this support. Me, he understood my personality, he knew that I could draw on my resources. I’ll tell you something. One day he said something shocking to me. For several months, he hardly spoke to me. And the time he came to talk to me, he just said to me: ‘When you leave here, you are going to leave for 40 million’. He just told me that. In my head, I said to myself: ‘But he’s crazy’. In the end, he was right.”
Batshuayi is not needed at Leeds, despite his proven quality
Batshuayi has proven in his early seasons at Chelsea, his time in France with Marseille, his loan spell at Dortmund and his overall goals-to-minutes ratio at Chelsea, that he is a top striker. He scores goals on a regular basis. But do Leeds really need another striker? An expensive one?
Spotrac claim Batshuayi is earning £90,000 a week at Stamford Bridge and although he will cost a smaller figure than the one Chelsea paid Marseille, he will still be expensive. So, with a striker hardly a priority at Leeds, surely avoiding Batshuayi is the best course of action. A loan could work.