Leeds United director of football Victor Orta has insisted that he managed to sell the Whites as a club with good foundations when he convinced Marcelo Bielsa to become the head coach in 2018.

Bielsa has transformed Leeds since arriving at Leeds two years ago, and turned a mid-table Championship team into league winners who will feature in the Premier League next season for the first time in 16 years.  


Orta suggested Bielsa’s name to owner Andrea Radrizzani towards the end of the 2017/18 season when they were looking for a replacement for Paul Heckingbottom.

The Spaniard played a key role in convincing the Argentine to take charge of Leeds and he admits that selling a second division club to Bielsa was a hard task as he thinks he was good enough to manage any top tier side or a top national team.

He feels the foundations that were laid at Leeds before Bielsa’s arrival were key in convincing the Argentine to join the club as the base was there for him to build on.

Orta insisted that he never doubted that Bielsa’s methods would fit in with English football.

The Spaniard told The Athletic: “For him to come to the second division of any country for the first time in his career was difficult.

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“I was thinking that he could take over any national team, something like that, why come to a second-tier team? But a lot of things were involved in our success.

“Even in our first year here, we put good foundations in the club. It meant we could sell [Bielsa] a club with good foundations and he said that himself.

“He analysed the squad and told us, ‘You have a lot of things here that can be good’. I thought he could fit with English football, to work, day by day, calmly.

“That was my idea and we’ve seen that it works.”

Orta has worked closely with Bielsa in strengthening the squad over the last two years and will play a key role in bringing in new players ahead of the Premier League season.