Marcelo Bielsa was completely wrong about Leeds United signing Brenden Aaronson
After the huge summer exodus at Elland Road, there are very few Leeds United players in Daniel Farke’s squad who were signed when Marcelo Bielsa was in charge of the Whites.
One player that the Argentine coach was very keen to add to his squad was Brendan Aaronson, with the current Uruguay boss attempting to sign the American international with two bids in the 2022 January transfer window, only for Red Bull Salzburg to knock back both approaches [The Athletic, 4 February 2022].
The midfielder was adjudged to be the perfect fit for Bielsa’s high-pressure system at Elland Road and the then Leeds United boss was keen to bring him to the Premier League, but less than a month after the January transfer window closed, Bielsa was sacked as the Whites’ manager.
That didn’t stop Leeds from moving to sign Aaronson, with the Whites. now under the management of Jesse Marsch, paying £24.7 million [Sky Sports] to bring the then 21-year-old to England, but after a dismal season he was one of the many to depart Elland Road this summer, joining Union Berlin on loan.
So far, the 22-year-old’s time in the Bundesliga has got off to a rough start and the German media are not pulling any punches in their critics of Aaronson, with Moz.de (13 October) writing: “Aaronson has not been able to meet this claim so far because he still lacks physical robustness. His dribbling strength rarely resulted in goal danger.
“In addition, Aaronson revealed considerable deficits in the completion of the goal. He missed several goal chances.”
Given Aaronson’s struggles with Leeds United, many supporters were already questioning what Bielsa had seen in the American to make him so keen to sign him and it doesn’t seem like there has been much quality during his early performances in the Bundesliga to prove the Whites wrong.
There aren’t many aspects of Bielsa’s time at Elland Road that can be criticised and overall he did an excellent job in getting United promoted to the Premier League and then keeping them away from relegation, but pushing for the signing of Aaronson may be one of his more obvious mistakes.
If the 22-year-old continues to struggle during his loan stint with Union Berlin for the remainder of the campaign, it could well be hard for Farke to find a club willing to take the US international off his hands, hopefully, for everyone’s sake, he can rediscover some sort of form to reignite his career.
However, it would be best for everyone if he could find a permanent home away from Elland Road as it doesn’t appear to be the right fit. Maybe things would have been different had he had the chance to play under Bielsa.
In other Leeds United news, one journalist has tipped Ilia Gruev to be key for Farke in the coming weeks