Leeds United have been predicted to finish no higher than 14th by Gabriel Agbonlahor after Marcelo Bielsa was given a tactical lesson by Brendan Rodgers.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Aston Villa striker claimed United have enough to stay up but Bielsa’s lack of tactical flexibility will prove his undoing.
Agbonlahor caused controversy last month after dubbing Leeds a “myth”, and has sparred with United fans on social media.
The pundit delivered his verdict on where Leeds will finish this season after their defence was torn apart by Jamie Vardy, Harvey Barnes and company in their 4-1 defeat to Leicester City on Monday night.
after watching a Jamie Vardy-inspired Leicester causehuge problems on Monday night.
United were torn apart in the first half-hour and slumped to a 4-1 defeat, taking the number of goals conceded from Premier League matches this season to 13.
“Teams will look at Leicester’s result and tactics, and use against Leeds,” Agbonlahor told Football Insider. “If you play into Leeds’ hands of pressing them high, they will beat you comfortably.
“If you do what Leicester did, and you sit behind the ball and play on the a counter attack, they’re not great at defending.
“Leeds’ll be fine this season, they’ll stay up, around 14th , 15th – they’ll stay up this season and they’ll get better. But it’s obvious how to beat them.”
Bielsa has been lauded for Leeds’ aggressive and attractive playing style but Agbonlahor pointed out how he was schooled by opposite number Brendan Rodgers.
“When you say is it admirable that the way Leeds don’t change the style, I think it’s a bit, sometimes it can be a bit naive, you know, for managers to not wanting to change their styles because if you’re playing against different teams, you have to change the style,” he added.
“Leicester have showed what they’ve done to Manchester City, they sat behind the ball, counter-attacked and it worked.
“Leeds have played right into their hands, and I think a lot of people predicted that Leeds will lose against Leicester.
“I think Bielsa’s gone and played them that way so maybe it’s something he’s still learning.
“He’s new to the Premier League, he’s been a great manager in his career, but to the Premier League now you might have to learn that, even though I want to be this high-press, attacking team sometimes you’re playing against teams that means you have to change your style.”