By Neil Champney

28th Jun, 2020 | 11:00am

'You've got to be kidding me' - Ian Holloway lashes out at criticism of Leeds 'one-trick pony'

Ian Holloway has heaped scorn on suggestions that Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa is a “one-trick pony”. 

The Argentine took an active role in his side’s 3-0 win over Fulham on Saturday afternoon, introducing Ezgjan Alioski and Pablo Hernandez to help keep his side on top after Patrick Bamford’s early opener.

Alioski went on to score the second, while Hernandez played a show-stopping pass to set up Jack Harrison for the third.

And Grimsby Town boss Holloway has lauded the 64-year-old for his masterful influence over proceedings.

Speaking on EFL on Quest (June 27th, 9pm, Quest), he said: “I think the man is a genius, I honestly do.

“His experience is incredible. He knew what was wrong with his team, and those changes were brilliant. One of them scored a goal and one of them created one.

“I heard a pundit say that he’s a one-trick pony. You’ve got to be kidding me.

“There are 21 points left to fight for and they will have to fight. The level is so fantastic. It’s unbelievable.”

Holloway is absolutely right to praise Bielsa here.

If we’re being honest, there were times towards the end of the second half on Saturday when Leeds were hanging on a little bit.

In fact, between the 31st and 45th minute, we managed just 25% possession, as per Wyscout.

But Bielsa intervened superbly, and as you can see from the graph above, between the 46th and 60th minute, we actually had a majority of the ball for the first time in the match.

The difference? Pablo Hernandez pulling the strings in the centre of the park.

The Spaniard looked sublimed throughout, and had a total action success rate that was 5.3% higher than his season average, as per Wyscout.

His influence was vital, but it’s Bielsa who deserves at least some of the plaudits for introducing him when he did.

In other Leeds United news, ‘Naughty one’ – Sky Sports pundit shares verdict on Fulham controversy v Leeds.