Derby claim training ground 'spy' stopped by police was Leeds employee

14 January, 2019, 07:31 | Author: Marlene Myers
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Upon later investigation, it came to light that he had been sent there to spy on Derby's preparation on Bielsa's behest.

Ahead of a Sky Bet Championship clash between Leeds and Derby County on Friday night, the Rams claimed that a man who was escorted from the perimeter of their training ground on Thursday after "acting suspiciously" was, in fact, a Leeds employee.

Derby accused Leeds of attempting to spy on a training session held by their manager Frank Lampard 24 hours before last night's game and Bielsa admitted at the end of Leeds' 2-0 win over County that he had personally authorised the scouting trip.

The club's Italian owner Andrea Radrizzani has met with his Derby counterpart Mel Morris to apologise for Bielsa's actions.

The FA is investigating the incident, while a Football League spokesman said: "It is, of course, up to Derby County as to how they progress this matter, but as of yet we have received no complaint or contact from the club".

Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa has admitted he did send someone to spy on Derby's training, but has not apologised for the incident.

Leeds are top of the Championship table despite losing their past three games in all competitions, while Derby occupy the final play-off spot in sixth.

Leeds United v Derby County – Sky Bet Championship – Elland Road
Frank Lampard and Marcelo Bielsa shake hands prior to kick-off

Bielsa, formerly in charge of Argentina, Chile and a host of European clubs, said Friday he had used the practice of spying on opposition training sessions for almost 20 years dating back to Argentina's 2002 World Cup qualifying campaign.

"There are some decisions I need to give, it doesn't matter if it is legal or not".

His assist for Roofe's goal showed what he is all about with some sparkling work on the right-hand side before a pinpoint cross found Roofe in the box and the gun striker slotted home to give Leeds the lead. "The responsibility for this incident is mine", Bielsa told Sky on Friday, via an interpreter.

Frank Lampard's men will take the trip to Elland Road this evening as they aim to inflict a fourth-straight defeat in all competitions on the league leaders.

"Without trying to find a justification, I have been using this kind of practice since the qualifications for the World Cup with Argentina, " said Bielsa, who coached his country from 1998-2004.

"On a sporting level, it's bad, in my opinion", Lampard said.

"Yesterday I talked to Frank and, for him, he felt I didn't respect fair play rules".

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