Yorkshire Evening Post journalist Phil Hay appeared on the Alan Brazil Show on talkSPORT (9am) on Thursday following Marcelo Bielsa’s extraordinary press conference on Wednesday night.
He talked about the information that Bielsa divulged as well as filling in both Alan Brazil and Dean Saunders on the level of his obsession with football, before dismantling a ridiculous claim from the former Welsh player.
Hay talked about how Bielsa has installed a bed at the training ground and said, “I don’t think he sleeps. If he does, he doesn’t sleep much.”
However, Dean Saunders wasn’t impressed and said that every club, even non-league sides, do the same analysis that Bielsa was doing at Leeds.
Hay appeared incredulous, saying, “There is no way that a non-league side does that level of analysis on their opponents. They study 300 hours of video on their opponents?”
“I’m telling you, I’ve done it,” said Saunders. “You just get a couple of students in. If you’ve got loads of money you can get even more in.”
Hay was not having any of it and dismissed Saunders, countering, “At non league level you’re not going to get the same level of analysis that you get in the Championship. But that’s not the point he was trying to make. He was trying to say, do you think on the basis of all this info we’ve got, that the game against Derby was won or lost by what we saw at the training session?”
Hay did concede that in his opinion it was a breach of etiquette and that he would be very surprised if Bielsa did it again.
This was brilliant. Hay was restrained but you could tell he was thinking, “Are you for real” as Saunders claimed that he did the sort of analysis that Bielsa does at Leeds when he was managing a non-league side. How did that work out for you Dean? It’s tough to argue facts when a pundit is insistent on making such stupid points. Saunders saying “I’ve done it” and saying he got a couple of students in is laughable, but such is the level of debate in the UK at the moment. It seems to be more important to say things for the sake of them, than actually analyse the situation intelligently. Hay said that he thought what Bielsa had done yesterday was “clever” and it puts the ball firmly back in the EFL’s court as they conduct their investigation. We’d be surprised if it turns out to be anything but a fine.