Marcelo Bielsa is an Argentine football manager who is presently in charge of Leeds United in England. Prior to pursuing a coaching career, Bielsa dabbled in the game as a player but was not particularly successful. His keen observations of the game and in-depth knowledge of the strategies, on the other hand, made him an ideal coach. He began his coaching career as the head coach of the youth division at Newell's Old Boys School. He has managed many football clubs in Mexico, Argentina, and England since then. His most well-known role was as coach of the Argentine national team, which won the 2004 Olympic gold medal. He then went on to lead Chile's national team, where he was hailed as a hero for dramatically improving the team's results. After coaching Chile, he became the manager of Athletic Bilbao, a Spanish team, and successfully led them to the continental cup finals. In 2018, he was named as the manager of Leeds United. Since Bielsa's arrival, the team's performance has soared, and they have risen to the top of their league. While Bielsa does not have many trophies or championship awards to his name, his unique coaching methods have inspired many footballers, allowing them to practice more effectively and perform at their best. He is regarded as one of the world's most respected managers and coaches.

Childhood and Adolescence

Marcelo Alberto Bielsa Caldera was born on July 21, 1955, to Lidia Caldera and Rafael Pedro Bielsa in Rosario, Argentina. He has two brothers and two sisters. His brother, Rafael Bielsa, and sister, Mara Eugenia Bielsa, are both politicians in Argentina who have previously held high-ranking government positions.

Bielsa comes from a well-known and rich family. He was renowned as a bookish kid who meticulously gathered sports periodicals. His mother's zeal and hard work were an inspiration to him.

He began playing football at the age of 15 and rose through the ranks of Newell's Old Boys School's football squad. On the other hand, he was unable to establish himself as a noteworthy player.


In the 1980s, Marcelo Bielsa shifted from playing football to coaching a team. He started as a coach at Newell's Old Boys School's youth level and worked his way up to become the team's manager.

He became the manager of Newell's team during their several tours in 1990. Under his leadership, the team won the Torneo Apertura and Torneo Integración in 1990. He was also the driving force behind the 1992 Copa Libertadores team, which reached the finals but lost. They did, however, win the Torneo Clausura in the same month to win the cup.

He swapped teams several times during the next three years. From 1992 until 1994, he was the manager of Club Atlas in Mexico. He afterward became the president of Club America, which he led until 1996. In 1998, he returned to Argentina to manage Club Atlético Vélez Sarsfield, which he helped win the Clausura.

He took over as manager of the Argentinian national team in 1998, succeeding Daniel Passarella. When Argentina fell to Colombia in the 1999 Copa America, Bielsa's enraged responses against the referee made him the center of attention.

Argentina qualified for the 2002 World Cup under Bielsa, but was eliminated in the elimination stage. The team, on the other hand, made it to the finals of the 2004 Copa America and won gold at the 2004 Summer Olympics.

Despite helping Argentina win its first Olympic gold medal in more than 50 years, Bielsa chose to leave on a positive note. Jose Pekerman took over as his successor.

Bielsa was named manager of the Chilean national team in 2007. The team blossomed under his leadership, defeating several of its old foes for the first time. He was a beloved figure in Chile after helping the squad qualify for the World Cup.

Fans were so impressed by Bielsa's attempts to improve the Chilean team's strategy and performance that they campaigned for him to continue advising them during the next World Cup. Bielsa, however, resigned from his job in 2011 due to political concerns.

In July 2011, he took over as manager of Athletic Bilbao, a Spanish football club based in the Basque country. When he was in charge, his team won the UEFA Europa League and made it to the Copa del Rey finals in 2012, but lost the title to Real Madrid.

Athletic's 2013–14 season was not particularly fruitful. Bielsa's contract with the club was not renewed as a result, and he left in June 2013.

Marseille, a French football club, announced in May 2014 that Bielsa would be hired as head coach for a two-year contract. They finished fourth in Ligue 1 in 2014 but struggled the following season. In August 2015, Bielsa quit due to disagreements with the management.

In July 2016, he joined Lazio, an Italian club. He, on the other hand, opted to leave just two days after joining. For failing to honor the contract, the club filed a €50 million lawsuit against him.

In 2017, he signed a two-year contract with Ligue 1 team Lille as their new manager. He made a lot of changes quickly, which irritated a lot of people. He was suspended as coach after 13 games, and his dismissal was confirmed afterward.

In June 2018, he was named the new head coach of Leeds United in England, succeeding Paul Heckingbottom. With a two-year contract, he became one of Leeds' highest-paid managers.

He began working with Leeds at the start of the EFL Championship, assisting them in winning their first three games. Leeds had not achieved such a feat since 1974, so this was a momentous occasion. Thanks to Bielsa's wizardry, Leeds was undefeated through the first six rounds.

Despite the fact that many of Leeds' players were injured during the EFL championship, the club continued to perform well and finished first. Bielsa was recognized for improving players' techniques and assisting them in giving their best performance.

Despite having a modest winning record, Bielsa is regarded as one of the most recognized and influential football managers in the world today. His victory with Argentina is regarded as the most significant adjustment he has made to a team. 

Bielsa is recognized for his meticulous attention to detail both on and off the field. His attention to detail in terms of play formations and approaches stems from his close observation of each individual player. Many have referred to him as a "genius" and a "coaching master."

A Scandal of Spying

Marcelo Bielsa's techniques were called into doubt in January 2019 when it was revealed that during the EFL Championship, he had dispatched a spy to learn about his opponent's training methods. While such behavior is not uncommon in football, it is frowned upon by many veterans and the media. Later, it was revealed that the incident would be examined.

The episode was dubbed "Spygate" by the media, which demanded an explanation from Bielsa. He decided to conduct a news conference where he presented an open and honest explanation of the events as well as his motivations for his actions. As a result, Bielsa only gained more respect for himself as a result of acknowledging this.

Achievements and Awards

Early in his coaching career, Marcelo Bielsa was recognized by the football community. In 2001, when he was managing Argentina's national team, the International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS) named him the World's Best National Coach.

Bielsa rose to international prominence after the Argentinian team he coached won the gold medal at the 2004 Summer Olympics. When his team was getting ready for the games, he used an aggressive strategy and a secret training session to help them get ready.

In August 2018, he was named Championship Manager of the Month for helping Leeds United go undefeated at the top of their respective leagues throughout the EFL Championship. This was the team's first victory in decades.

Personal & Family Life

Marcelo Bielsa has been married to Laura Bracalenti, an academic and scholar, since 1990. Inés Bielsa is the couple's only child.