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Marcelo Bielsa's Leeds United accused of spying on rival team's training session

Argentine coach is renowned for his meticulous planning ahead of matches – and it looks like he may have sent a spy to watch over Derby County's training session.

Friday 11 January, 2019
Marcelo Bielsa, pictured in his new office, on his first day as manager of Leeds United Football Club.
Marcelo Bielsa, pictured in his new office, on his first day as manager of Leeds United Football Club. Foto:Courtesy Leeds United

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Marcelo Bielsa, the famous Argentine coach known as 'El Loco', is known for his meticulous planning and attention to detail when it comes to preparing his teams for matches.

He might have taken it too far this week, however.

Bielsa, as coach of English second-tier club Leeds United has been accused by rival team Derby Country of having sent an employee to spy on its training session ahead of a league match on Friday.

Derby County says police were called to its training ground on Thursday following reports of a man "acting suspiciously outside the premises." Derby said the man works for the "footballing staff at Leeds" and it would hold talks with the club about the incident.

Leeds didn't immediately issue a response.

Police said the man was seen at the perimeter fence, inside which Derby's players were training. British newspaper The Daily Mail reported he had in his possession a pair of binoculars and a change of clothes.

Derby manager Frank Lampard brought an early end to the training session and the club has made a complaint to the English Football League.

Bielsa's Leeds is top of the League Championship going into the match at sixth-place Derby.

- TIMES/AP

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