Marcelo Bielsa: It’s a big challenge for us

Marcelo Bielsa: It’s a big challenge for us

Head coach on Arsenal.

Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa spoke to the media ahead of Monday’s Emirates FA Cup trip to Arsenal.

The Whites head to the Emirates Stadium in the third round, in a repeat of the 1972 final.

Bielsa spoke about the upcoming test against Premier League opposition and about being the underdogs going into the tie, differing from being the favourites going into most Sky Bet Championship matches.

“Of course it is a big challenge for us,” said Bielsa.

“It is enough to see the players and the prestige and level they have.

“The stadium they play at and the quantity of people who go to the stadium, how many supporters they have around the world, the manager and previous managers- all these facts describe the power of the club.

“Being the favourite in one game is external analysis.

“When people think that we are the favourite in one match, we don’t consider things like that, neither with the opposite, which is in this case.

“Every time we compete we trust in our resources and respect our opponent’s resources.

“We will always do this with the wish to impose our style and we will try to do this on Monday.”

Bielsa also revealed team news ahead of the fixture, with Robbie Gotts and Illan Meslier set for first team debuts at the Emirates.

“Meslier is going to play instead of Kiko Casilla, Gaetano Berardi in place of Liam Cooper, Barry Douglas in place of Ezgjan Alioski, Alioski in place of Helder Costa and Gotts in place of Stuart Dallas.

“Meslier has qualities that allow him to be responsible in a massive match like this one and is a goalkeeper who has experience in a first team.

“Gotts is a player that deserves to play and he is in his best moment in our process.

“The most important thing is that he has worked a lot to have this opportunity.

“It’s just one first step in the beginning of his career.

“Most of them don’t have to prove anything to us, if they play well it will be better, but if they don’t play well it isn’t going to change anything about their steps forward.”