Leeds United

Noel Whelan has hailed Marcelo Bielsa a “genius” after it was revealed Leeds United last week conducted training sessions on how to play when at a numerical disadvantage.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Whites and Coventry striker said it is vital to extensively prepare for a game against Manchester City given their ability in possession.

An incredible defensive display helped Leeds to a memorable victory over league-leaders Manchester City at the Etihad on Saturday, despite the visitors playing over half of the game with 10 men.

The Athletic revealed on Monday that Bielsa only last week conducted several sessions and tutorials on how his team should play when a man down.

As such, his side were well-prepared to re-organise and cope with the loss of their captain Liam Cooper, who was sent off on the stroke of half-time.

When asked by Football Insider for his thoughts on Bielsa’s preparation for City, Whelan said: “I think that is genius.

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“Sometimes you know you are going to be under pressure and that is certainly the case when you face Manchester City.

“They dominate possession and the quality of their players is frightening. You are going to have to defend for the majority of the game.

“Sometimes in training you do go with 10-men because it is a very different way of playing.

“I think you have to prepare like that when you playing against a team like Manchester City because 90 per cent of the time you are under the cosh.”

In other news, Leeds United have been urged to reignite their hunt for £25million-rated forward.