Raphinha says Leeds United 'hero' Marcelo Bielsa helped him get to Barcelona
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Raphinha says Leeds United 'hero' Marcelo Bielsa helped him get to Barcelona

Photo by George Wood/Getty Images

In an interview with Mundo Deportivo this week, Raphinha hailed Leeds United ‘hero’ Marcelo Bielsa and claimed that the Argentine helped him sign for Barcelona.

The Whites signed the Brazilian for just £17 million in October 2020 (BBC). Everybody knew he was a talented player, but his performances in a Leeds shirt in his two seasons there definitely exceeded initial expectations.

Out of Raphinha’s 67 games for the Whites, 56 came under Bielsa. The Argentine elevated the winger’s game to a whole new level, and the now-Barcelona man has nothing but praise for him.

Raphinha went as far as saying that if it wasn’t for Bielsa, he’d be nowhere near Barcelona or the Brazilian national team now.

Raphinha says Marcelo Bielsa helped him sign for Barcelona

In his interview this week, Raphinha said about Bielsa: “He’s a coach who helped me a lot from the first moment I arrived at Leeds. He always demands more, always demands maximum performance. 

“He helped me get to the national team and helped me get to Barça. If it wasn’t for his teachings, as a group or individually, I probably wouldn’t be here.

“In addition to having a style of play that is always respectful of the ball, he seeks maximum performance in training and in games.

“He was an important person for me and for my career, I will always carry him with me.

Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

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Raphinha isn’t the first player to credit Bielsa for his success and he definitely won’t be the last one.

The Argentine, despite how his tenure at Elland Road ended, is still adored by Whites fans. Even his successor, Jesse Marsch, branded him as a ‘club legend’ and a Leeds United ‘hero’, which just shows you how popular he is.

Raphinha will be missed by Leeds United supporters following his £55 million move (The Athletic) to Barcelona earlier this month.

The Brazilian was outstanding for the Whites during his two years at Elland Road, and it really won’t be easy to fill in the huge void that he has left at the club now.

Photo by Masashi Hara/Getty Images
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