Injury expert: Bielsa putting Leeds stars at 'serious risk' after Gelhardt reveal
Leeds United players run the risk of injury unless they are operating at peak fitness and are totally on top of their game.
So says injury expert Ben Dinnery, who runs the Premier Injuries site and has a background in medicine and data analysis.
Marcelo Bielsa is well known for his assiduous approach to training and his Leeds side top many charts when it comes to running stats.
As quoted by Sky Sports on 31 October, youngster Joe Gelhardt revealed it had been a “touch change” to meet the Argentine manager’s standards.
Their mile-a-minute work rate has led some commentators to believe that Bielsa’s players are at increased risk of injury.
Robin Kock, Luke Ayling and Patrick Bamford are all currently sidelined, while Kalvin Phillips and Raphinha have just returned to action.
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Dinnery explained that Leeds are in a class of their own when it comes to their work rate.
“Their metrics and intensity levels mean Leeds almost have their own category,” he told Football Insider correspondent Adam Williams.
“If you’re coming back from injury, there is ‘return to play’, ‘return to match sharpness’, and then ‘return to Bielsa play’.
“I take distance covered stats with a pinch of salt. That doesn’t tell you a huge amount about a team.
“It’s the number of high-intensity sprints and the distance covered in zone four and five that are really what matters.
“We know that fatigue is a major risk factor when it comes to injuries. But that’s why we see Marcelo Bielsa manage his teams really well.
“He kept Kalvin Phillips on the bench after he returned to fitness from his recent setback.
“You need to be on your game 100 per cent in Bielsa’s team, otherwise there is a serious risk of injury. The style of play will push you to the limit.”