Marcelo Bielsa is a man on a mission, and according to L’Equipe he could make Yoann Barbet a Leeds player.
The Frenchman possesses many qualities which Bielsa would appreciate. He is strong but good on the ball, and is able to play as a centre-back or left-back, and to top it off he wouldn’t cost a penny in transfer fees.
Leeds may have boasted the second best defence in the Championship, but it proved our undoing at key stages this season – in home matches against Norwich and Wigan, and crucially against Derby.
Discipline certainly didn’t help in that play-off match, and that’s where Barbet comes in. The Frenchman has picked up just one red card in 118 appearances for Brentford, which came early on in his stint at the Bees when he was still adapting to the English game.
Contrast that to Gaetano Berardi, who has picked up five red cards in the same period, his rashness cost us the Derby match and with it Bielsa’s faith in him, which was waning anyway.
Pontus Jansson and Liam Cooper were brilliant this season, but if Bielsa wants to utilise a three-at-the-back formation which he did on occasion this season, then he will need another experienced Championship defender.
Barbet has been ever-present for Brentford in the past few years, and is the reliable type of player Leeds need to mount another promotion push.