Exclusive: Noel Whelan tips 35-yr-old to be next Leeds manager: 'He knows what he's doing'


Noel Whelan has tipped Carlos Corberan to be Marcelo Bielsa’s successor at Leeds United.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former United striker claimed he would have “no problem” with the club’s Under-23s boss being promoted into the hot seat when the Argentine leaves.

Bielsa signed a two-year contract when he joined Leeds last summer but there is believed to be an escape clause if they fail to get promoted at the end of this season.

Talk of a future without the high-profile manager has accelerated in the wake of consecutive league defeats that have almost certainly condemned Leeds to the end-of-season play-offs.

Spaniard Corberan, 35, joined the Yorkshire giants in the summer of 2017 as Under-23s manager and has combined that role with a place on the first-team coaching staff since Bielsa arrived.

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“We don’t know what the future holds, one thing for sure, Corberan knows what he’s doing and it’s definitely possible,” Whelan said. “He’s on the bench as well for first team games so he’s got that close relationship with Marcelo Bielsa and, with every player who’s gone into management after playing days, you always take something from a manager.

“You have your own style but there’s always certain things that you want to keep that you’ve learned and you pass it on to players. I’m sure he’s
learned a lot from working with Marcelo Bielsa.

“One thing about the [Under] 23s and the 18s, everyone plays the same as the first team. Everyone’s got a specific job in case they are called up that they know their role straight away and that’s important because you don’t want to be out of your depth, not know what you’re doing.

“If you all play the same formation, all play the same way, it’s very easy to slot straight in when the manager wants.

“But yeah, look, there’s no doubt that under-23s is not where he’s going to want to finish his career, he’s going to want to have a taste of the big time and be the number one at a football club. If it is at Leeds I’d have no problem with that.”

Leeds Under-23s won the Professional Development League with two matches to spare and also reached the semi-finals of the Premier League Cup before Tuesday’s defeat to Newcastle United eliminated them from the competition.

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