Leeds United, el retorno de un histórico

Leeds United, el retorno de un histórico

Todos conocemos de sobra que el Leeds United es uno de los equipos más históricos, no solo de la Premier League, sino del fútbol internacional. Sin embargo, lo que no muchos saben, es la gran historia que se esconde detrás del hoy equipo de Marcelo Bielsa.

Por ello, hoy repasaremos los orígenes hasta la actualidad, la trayectoria que ha tenido el equipo inglés para ser uno de los mejores equipos de todos los tiempos en la primera división inglesa.

Los orígenes del Leeds United

El Leeds United fue creado en 1919 a raíz de la desaparición del Leeds City Football Club en Yorkshire. Comenzó participando en la Football League One, hasta que en la temporada 1922-23, logró ascender a la Football League Championship.

Sin embargo, ‘The Whites, no consiguieron grandes actuaciones en aquella época y fueron alternando ascensos con descensos ,pasando sin pena ni gloria por la máxima categoría inglesa en aquella época. Sería ya en la temporada 1949-50 cuando lograron cuajar una gran temporada consiguiendo un quinto puesto junto con los cuartos de final de la FA Cup.

Sin embargo, el equipo no lograba mantener una regularidad durante estas décadas e intercalaba ascensos y buenas temporadas en la Football League Championship, junto con descensos y temporadas pésimas.

Sería ya en la época de 1960, con la llegada de Don Revie, cuando el equipo tuvo un lavado de cara y comenzó a sembrar el miedo entre sus rivales del campeonato inglés, siendo conocidos por el apodo de ‘Dirty Leeds’.

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/B_iN8hqFv_b/

 

«The Dirty Leeds» , la época dorada del club

Don Revie llegó al equipo del Leeds en marzo de 1961 a petición de la directiva. Allí, lo convencieron para que fuera jugador-entrenador y formara un equipo competitivo de cara a la siguiente temporada. Y así lo hizo, formó una plantilla dura y competitiva a raíz de jugadores experimentados y de su confianza, tomando decisiones más allá de lo futbolístico.

Una anécdota curiosa fue una petición a la directiva en la que solicitaba el cambio de uniforme de azul y amarillo al color blanco ya que se inspiró en el club que más títulos ganaba en Europa en aquella época, el Real Madrid.

Desde la llegada de Revie, el Dirty Leeds’ lograron la etapa más exitosa del club en cuanto a títulos y palmarés, a pesar de muchas críticas por parte de jugadores y prensa debido a su juego duro. Los títulos que ganaron con Revie al mando fueron: la League Cup en 1968, la Community Shield en 1971, la FA Cup en 1972 y otra League Cup en 1973. Además, también lograron llegar tres veces a la final de la FA Cup y a la final de la antigua Copa de Europa.

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/BnlJIk4hbmL/

El Leeds después de Revie

Tras la salida de Don Revie en 1973, el equipo de Yorskshire comenzó a sufrir un gran declive a raíz de la alternancia de entrenadores que no lograron tener una continuidad en el club ni asentar las bases en el equipo. A pesar de ello, desde la salida de Revie en 1973 hasta 1980, el equipo lograba clasificarse para competiciones europeas, pero comenzaba a bajar puestos en la clasificación de la liga inglesa.

Ya en los años 80, comenzaría, en menor medida, el declive del club con el descenso en la 1981-1982 ocupando el último lugar en la clasificación. Tuvo que esperar ocho años en la segunda división inglesa para volver a primera en la década de los 90.

Esta última década, sería una nueva época exitosa, aunque no tanto como la de Don Revie. El club, con Wilkinson en el banquillo, logró ganar su tercera League Cup superando al Manchester United. Esto se debió al talento joven que tenía la plantilla con Cantona, Chapman, etc.

En el resto de temporadas el Leeds United cuajó buenas actuaciones en liga, quedando entre los 5 primeros y llegando a rondas avanzadas de la Copa de la UEFA.

Con el comienzo de la temporada de 1999-2000, el Leeds se clasificó para la nueva copa europea, la Champions League. En ella tuvo lugar una de las temporadas más exitosas de la historia del club, con un equipo formado por grandes jugadores como Rio Ferdinand, Woodgate, Keane…

 

 

La peor época de «The Whites»

El Leeds, tras lograr buenas actuaciones en liga y copa durante las últimas 2 décadas, tuvo que declararse en quiebra en 2004 tras tener unas deudas de casi 80 millones de dólares por culpa de una pésima gestión económica.

Además, ese mismo año, tuvieron que vender el estadio Elland Road para poder hacer frente a las deudas y salir del paso.

En el tema deportivo, el club descendió, por primera vez, a la tercera categoría del fútbol inglés en la temporada 2006-2007. A pesar de la penuria del club, lograron vencer a su mayor rival, el Manchester United de Alex Fergusson en 2010 en la FA Cup.

El Leeds de Bielsa, vuelta a la ilusión

Marcelo Bielsa llegó la temporada 18-19 al conjunto de Yorkshire tras dirigir al Lille. El Leeds se encontraba en la Championship, y ya en su primera campaña logró dejar al equipo en la 3ª posición, cayendo en la fase de play off ante el Derby County.

El «loco» Bielsa hizo cambios tácticos en el equipo, tratando de dominar el balón, atacar por las bandas y ser superior en campo rival. También se notó su mano a la hora de presionar arriba y hacer del Leeds un equipo agresivo y muy letal de cara a puerta.

Sin embargo, el Leeds no logró ascender en la 2018/2019 debido a los fallos en defensa en el último tramo de la campaña.

La siguiente temporada comenzó aún mejor que la anterior y consiguió que el equipo encajara 25 goles menos que la pasada. Jugadores importantes como Bamford como el mayor goleador del equipo, Pablo Hernández, Jack Harrison, Klich, etc. Una clara mejoría en el equipo que se vio reflejada en los resultados. El equipo terminó el año como primer clasificado de Championship, logrando el ascenso directo tras cosechar la friolera de 93 puntos. Un dominio absoluto de la categoría, que tras muchos años, ya se les había quedado pequeña.

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/CDTUKm1jaBT/

 

De esta forma, Bielsa ha logrado devolver a un club histórico como el Leeds donde se merece, a la Premier League. Estaremos atentos de los fichajes y movimientos del equipo este año y de si logran realizar una buena temporada en la competición inglesa después de estar 16 años sin competir en ella.

 

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