Leeds United once lined up an ex-Premier League boss to replace Marcelo Bielsa should he have decided to leave the West Yorkshire outfit.
Reports emerged this summer that the La Liga giants Barcelona was being urged to appoint the Argentine manager following the Champions League defeat.
He was among the candidates for the Nou Camp hotseat before Ronald Koeman was appointed last week.
Quique Setien was sacked after their 8-2 defeat to Bayern Munich, the latter club went on to win the Champions League Final against PSG on Monday night.
Leeds execs were said to be fearing they might end up losing their manager to the Catalan giants, so subsequently turned to the now former Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe as a contingency.
Bielsa guided the club to this season’s Championship title and a return to the top flight for the first time in 16 years.
He is now set to sign a new contract to extend his stay at Elland Road, however he hasn’t been quick about writing his signature on the deal.
Leeds are not the only club to have shown an interest in Howe, 42, since he left the Cherries after their relegation from the Premier League.
He was also being eyed by Crystal Palace before they decided to stick with boss Roy Hodgson.
Former footballer turned pundit Tony Cascarino apologised to Leeds fans for saying that he believed Bielsa would be the perfect man for the Barca job.
“It’s an incredible job and they would have a number of great managers lined up,” said the Weekend Sports Breakfast host.
“If you said to me tomorrow, ‘who would I want to take?’ Sorry Leeds fans, but I would be after Bielsa every day of the week.
“I could see it working.
“He’s all about that Barcelona type of football, the way they play, that hunger, the emphasis on young players.
“Barcelona can attract the very best players in the world and, if they could do that, I’d want a manager of his ilk.
“I’ve seen what he’s done at Marseille, I’ve seen what he’s done at Leeds, and I see the way he plays football, the fans out there would adore Bielsa.”
It was weeks ago that newspaper outlet The Sun were been forced to take down their article about Leeds United which emerged and went viral.
The ‘likes, retweets and replies’ quickly gathering pace from majority of social media users who laughed and didn’t believe it just by reading the headline to it.
The story claimed that Lionel Messi was urging La Liga giants Barcelona to get rid of Quique Setién and swopped in for Marcelo Bielsa to replace him.
Many fans questioned how genuine the article was, especially as it had no such quotes included with it.
A month ago, The Sun stated that Bielsa’s contract is set to run out, yet we all know that it’s been reported elsewhere that a deal was looking on the verge of happening to see the current manager lead his side into the new Premier League season.
The report added that Bielsa being linked with Barca was bound to set ‘alarm bells are ringing at Elland Road’.
They added that club bosses have so far been fairly relaxed about delaying new talks to allow Bielsa to enjoy the title celebrations.
Though, it did add that they had been no contact between the two sides as of yet.
However, the prospect of losing a man who has done so much for the club may prompt to act imminently.
According to The Sun, Messi has been frustrated at current Nou Camp coach after the club missed out on winning the league title.
The 61-year-old is coming under increasing pressure despite being in the role for little over six months.
There is also concern about the off-the-field issues at the Spanish giants, with Josep Maria Bartomeu’s future as club president under threat.
All of which was mentioned in The Sun’s story, which caught the attention on many other media outlets in teamTALK, Daily Mail, Telegraph, Mirror, Sports Mole, Yahoo, Football365, Daily Star and Leeds Live. It got onto BBC Sport’s gossip column.
The Sun however have ended up deleting their ‘exclusive’ story, with the URL now including the words ‘legal removal’.
As MOTLeedsNews reveals, it and the Daily Mirror’s article links to an empty page.
It’s rare that something like this happens for such a big story, but it seems someone has contacted The Sun after taking issue with it.
There could been many reasons as to why it was taken down, but it seemed a rather unusual disjointed story that looks false from the off.
There has been plenty of reaction to the latest story, claiming Leeds lined up ex-Premier League boss Eddie Howe to replace Marcelo Bielsa…
Not for me need better
— Ron (@ronaallleeds) August 23, 2020
why would poch want to manage leeds
— arch 🧃 (@RekeemTheDream2) August 23, 2020