Marcelo Bielsa has praised Mikel Arteta as a ‘great coach’ ahead of Leeds clash with Arsenal at the Emirates this weekend.
Leeds travel to face the north London side with the two sides just one place apart in the Premier League table, the visitors currently sitting 10th and one point ahead of the Gunners following a positive return to the top flight this season.
Arsenal have struggled to build on an impressive first few months under Arteta by contrast and are languishing in 11th, nine points adrift of the top four and the Champions League places.
The two sides played out a goalless draw in their first meeting this season in a fixture which saw Nicolas Pepe sent off, Leeds unable to turn their dominance and advantage into goals on a frustrating evening at Elland Road.
Bielsa is expecting another difficult test this weekend and has praised Arteta despite an indifferent first full season as Arsenal manager, insisting the Gunners have ‘never lost their identity’ despite a disappointing start to the campaign.
“I think he’s a great coach,” Bielsa said at his pre-match press conference.
“His team have never lost their identity. They have different types of players for the same positions which demands knowledge of the style.
“We have to bear in mind that in that game they played half the game a player down so they were at a disadvantage, so any analysis made would not be a balanced one.
“We had so many shots, so one of the secrets to winning the game would be to increase our efficiency.”