Jesse Marsch has claimed Leeds United will have the best academy in Europe within three years. Marsch, 48, replaced Marcelo Bielsa on February 28. Leeds are...
Jesse Marsch has claimed Leeds United will have the best academy in Europe within three years.
Marsch, 48, replaced Marcelo Bielsa on February 28. Leeds are currently embroiled in a relegation battle, sitting 17th in the Premier League.
They are level on points with Burnley, who lead Leeds on goal difference, and two points clear of 18th place Everton — but the Merseyside club hold a game in hand.
Speaking on Sky Sports, Marsch insisted that he could keep the club in the Premier League, and insisted he had not considered relegation.
“Right now, my focus is singularly on doing what we can to make sure that we stay in the Premier League,” the American said. “I haven’t allowed myself to even open the door about what if it doesn’t go well, because that doesn’t help, right?”
Pressed on what his long-term plans were for Leeds, and what the club would look like in three years, Marsch replied: “It looks like the best academy in Europe, with young players that are playing in the first-team consistently, where we’re competing for Europe consistently, with our process of developing players from the academy into the first-team.
“In the process, we’re also creating world class players who can perform here, but also can help us financially by selling them to the most massive clubs for massive amounts of money, and then reinvesting that into the infrastructure of the club until we get to the point five or 10 years from now when we can really talk about competing for titles and being one of the best teams in Europe. That’s the goal.”
The Leeds academy has been tested on several occasions this season due to a lengthy injury list. It has traditionally been a hotbed of player development, producing players such James Milner, Gary Speed, and David Batty.
In recent years, Kalvin Phillips is the headline graduate, while there are high hopes for 16-year-old midfielder Archie Gray. Last month, 21,321 streamed into Elland Road for the last home game of Leeds’ Premier League 2 season.
The senior side play Arsenal at the Emirates on Sunday afternoon, and could go 16th with a surprise win.‘In three years, we will have the best academy in Europe’ — Leeds head coach Jesse Marsch - The Athletic View Story