Last season, Leeds United and Marcelo Bielsa became the darlings of English football, playing an exciting uptempo brand of football and finishing ninth in their first year back in the Premier League.
A return of fans this season—some of whom chanted “you’ll never walk again” and “always the victim” after Harvey Elliott suffered serious injury on Sunday—has served as a reminder owhy Leeds had a negative reputation amongst the last time they were in the top flight.
Still, with those fans now back and with the style of football Bielsa’s side play, Leeds make for one of the more challenging away days for any opponent. And the Reds rose to that challenge over the weekend.
“It’s always difficult to come here,” said Liverpool fullback Trent Alexander-Arnold following his side’s 3-0 victory. “It’s difficult to find space but once you can, it kind of opens up and you’re able to create chances—and I think that’s what we did.
“We could have been a lot more clinical, put the game to bed earlier and really probably scored a lot more goals. But you never turn your nose up at a 3-0 win at Elland Road—a clean sheet, three goals and three points.”
Another goal or two for the Reds wouldn’t have been entirely underserved on the run of play, with Liverpool holding 56% of the possession, outshooting hosts Leeds 30-9 (and 9-4 on target), and with the visitors completing 30% more passes.
In the end, though, even if they could have been a little more clinical it’s difficult to find much to fault in that kind of a dominant performance away to one of the league’s toughest mid-table opponents.
“They are unorthodox and they stick to what they know,” Alexander-Arnold added. “Even when they’re down to 10 men, they’re still playing the same way. It’s not sitting behind the ball and defending, it’s front-footed, chasing around , and wanting to be aggressive.”