By Nick Ware

9th Jan, 2021 | 6:30pm

'Bielsa has shown little interest' – Daily Mail gets it all wrong on Leeds ahead of FA Cup clash

The Daily Mail have speculated that Crawley Town could cause Leeds United some problems in Sunday’s FA Cup fixture but predict the Whites to overcome them.

Marcelo Bielsa’s side travel to Crawley on Sunday eager to avoid a shock defeat to their League Two opponents who will be in a positive mood on the back of nine-game unbeaten run.

Leeds, meanwhile, will be desperate to bounce back after a disappointing 3-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur as they eye an FA Cup run to keep up their solid start to the season.

The Mail claims that Bielsa has shown little interest in the cups, although he said in his press conference on Friday that the FA Cup was the “essence” of English football and that he was going to name a strong line-up, so it doesn’t look like they’ve done very good research.

In their ‘FA Cup shock ratings‘ article the Daily Mail predict the chances of minnows beating their respective ‘giants’ with the Leeds-Crawley fixture one of their focused games.

The Daily Mail feature opines that Crawley “have more than a fleeting chance of causing an upset…Marcelo Bielsa has shown little interest in making a fist of things in the cups yet”.

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They give a ‘shock rating’ of 4/10 so they still heavily favour the Whites to proceed past their lower-league challengers.

Different squad, different circumstances

The Bielsa comment is really misinformed given the unrelenting fixture schedules that he has had to deal with in his previous two seasons and what he said yesterday.

In the Championship teams are required to play at least 46 games (depending on play-offs), eight more than in the Premier League.

Leeds will have had more than a week off before the Crawley clash and do not play for another six days after, against Brighton on January 16.

Bielsa also did not have the likes of Raphinha and Rodrigo to call upon before this season and their arrivals have significantly bolstered the quality in the Leeds ranks and have consigned previous regulars to cameo roles.

Pablo Hernandez, for example, has been a key figure in the Bielsa revolution but he has made only three starts this season and could come in for the Crawley match.

This shows the depth Bielsa currently has at his disposal and shows why comments about campaigns gone by are rather useless and do little to improve the quality of discourse.

In other Leeds United news, our view on the tactical comments that will be music to the ears of fans ahead of the Crawley game.