Leeds United backroom staff members Diego Flores, Pablo Quiroga and Diego Reyes have been backed by The Athletic’s Phil Hay to leave Elland Road this summer should Marcelo Bielsa walk out on the club.
The trio are devoted to working alongside Bielsa, with Quiroga and Reyes having been a part of his staff for more than a decade while Flores joined the boss six years ago and is now as trusted as the other members of his crew.
Bielsa places a great deal of importance on his assistants, with the Argentine calling on them to take control of a large percentage of training, analysis and match preparation that can see them working at Thorp Arch from 8am to well past 6pm each day.
Flores, Quiroga and Reyes’ importance to Bielsa cannot be understated, with each – and Under 23s head coach Carlos Corberan – often jumping in and out of the technical area on matchdays barking instructions as the game unfolds.
Each are well aware of the exceptional work that Bielsa has done to guide Leeds from a mid-table club to one vying for promotion into the Premier League, too, and would not be expected to see that as a challenge they would like to take up should the boss leave in the summer.
If Bielsa walks out of Elland Road for the last time at the end of the campaign, it would be expected to start an exodus with Flores, Quiroga and Reyes all following the Argentine to wherever his career takes him next.
Would you back Corberan succeeding Bielsa?
Neither of the trio have previous managerial experience and it is unlikely that they are aiming to change that anytime soon, with Bielsa’s one-day inevitable retirement the only thing that would see the group disband.
Bielsa leaving United in the summer would not be expected to have any impact on the futures of U23s boss Corberan or Head of Medicine and Performance Rob Price, as both were in West Yorkshire before Bielsa arrived.
Corberan may, therefore, be a potential candidate to step up from the youth ranks to the senior fold in the eventuality that Bielsa does leave.
The 36-year-old joined United a year before Bielsa and was promoted to a joint Technical Coach role when the Argentine arrived – giving him experience with the youth at the club as well as the senior players.
That experience may pay dividends in the summer if the first-team head coach role becomes available, as well as having a CV which features last season’s Professional Development League North Division title.