By Mark Smith

24th Dec, 2019 | 11:30am

'Important thing' - Leeds star opens up on Bielsa plans over Christmas

Everyone will remember the strict training methods that Marcelo Bielsa brought to Leeds United when first arriving at the club.

A running track was made at Thorp Arch, and it was put to good use in pre-season with the South American running his side into the ground to make sure they were the fittest team in the league.

Those strict policies need to continue throughout the season, and it appears that Christmas is no excuse for that to stop in West Yorkshire.

Kalvin Phillips was recently asked about Bielsa over the Christmas period, starting off with whether or not he allows extra time off at Thorp Arch.

“No,” he told Sky Sports’ EFL podcast.

“He keeps it the same, he wants us in working hard, but he realises that family is an important thing.

“Last year, I think he did, he gave us a day where we could spend it, came in early on a morning and gave us a day with our families.”

With the Preston game on Boxing Day being at home and a late kick-off, it may be much easier for Bielsa to allow his squad to spend more time with their families.

The players will know that this is a massive game, and that must stay in the back of their minds. After two games without a win, the gap has closed to eight points to the play-offs, with Leeds missing the chance to extend it even further.

Games against three promotion rivals in Preston, Sheffield Wednesday, and West Brom are all in the next month, a period that could make or break any continued promotion push for the Whites moving forward.

In other Leeds United news, MOT View: Impressive stats prove that PL 18y/o could be inspired move amid reported Leeds hunt