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Leeds legend Marcelo Bielsa’s return as manager collapses after Athletic Bilbao presidential election

MARCELO BIELSA’s return to management has fallen through following the announcement of the results of Athletic Bilbao’s presidential elections.

Former Leeds boss Inaki Arechabaleta had reportedly reached an agreement to become manager of the club if he wins the vote.

Ex-Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa will remain without a club at the start of next season

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Ex-Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa will remain without a club at the start of next seasonCredit: PA

However, getting 33.7 percent of the vote was not enough to beat fellow contender Jon Uriarte.

He won by 44.7 percent and The Athletic claim Uriarte names ex-Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde as the LaLiga side’s new gaffer.

Bielsa, 66, had previously managed Athletic Bilbao between 2011 and 2013.

During his time at the Basque club, Bielsa guided them to a Europa League and Copa del Rey runners-up finish.

The following season was disappointing as they finished 12th and he left when his contract expired after allegedly falling out with some of the club’s staff.

However, a return to Bilbao was imminent as Arechabaleta backed the Argentine in his presidential campaign.

In a press conference he said: “[Bielsa] is the most respected coach in the world.

“He is also a coach for the future, although in the past he has given us the best season of this century.”

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But that wasn’t enough for Arechabaleta to win and Bielsa’s return to the lead will have to wait.

He was sacked as Leeds boss in February despite being a popular figure at Elland Road as the team were dragged into a relegation battle.

Meanwhile, Athletic Bilbao are still turning to a former manager in Valverde to take over next season.

Valverde, 58, is something of a club legend, having made 170 appearances for them during his playing days.

He will now return for his third spell as manager, having been in charge of the club between 2003-2005 and 2013-2017.

https://www.the-sun.com/sport/5638934/leeds-marcelo-bielsa-athletic-bilbao-presidential-valverde/ Leeds legend Marcelo Bielsa’s return as manager collapses after Athletic Bilbao presidential election

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