Gary Neville makes Leeds United vow as striker transfer speculation emerges

Gary Neville has compared Leeds to Barcelona teams of old and says he will not be criticising Marcelo Bielsa’s tactics this season.

The Whites suffered a 6-2 defeat to old rivals Manchester United on Sunday, being stunned by two goals in the first three minutes as the Red Devils created numerous chances.

Yet the visitors had plenty of opportunities of themselves in an open, end-to-end match that showed both the good and the bad of Bielsa’s tactical plan.

Speaking on his Sky Sports podcast, Neville said the way Leeds play reminds him of Barcelona sides of the past.

“I absolutely love them,” he said. “I love watching them and I love every game they play in.

“He demands a lot from his own players but the players that are on the other team know they’ve been in a real game. Man United’s defenders just won 6-2 but will be in that dressing room thinking they could have conceded five or six.

“There were some teams I played against, like Barcelona obviously, for many years you played against Barcelona in the late 90s and they weren’t that great at the time but every time you played against them, they could score three or four. They had an incredible style and good players.”

West Bromwich Albion captain Jake Livermore will miss next week’s Premier League clash with Leeds – much to the annoyance of new boss Sam Allardyce.

Livermore is facing a three-match ban after being sent off during Sunday’s 3-0 home defeat to Aston Villa.

That rules the midfielder out of the game against Leeds at the Hawthorns on Tuesday, December 29.

Livermore was shown a straight red card following a lunge on Villa’s Jack Grealish 36 minutes into Allardyce’s first match in charge.

After the match, an unhappy Allardyce suggested Livermore could end up losing the captain’s armband as a result of his actions.

“I’m really disappointed with the result and sending off of our captain,” said the former England boss.

“I am upset with Jake. I couldn’t be anything other than upset.”

Leeds striker Rafa Mujica is reported to be a January transfer target for three Spanish clubs.

The 21-year-old is currently on loan at Real Oviedo but his stay could be ended next month, according to El Desmarque (via HITC).

Mujica has played in only four out of 19 Segunda Division fixtures this season.

He did score twice, though, in a 3-2 victory over CD Coria in the first round of the Copa del Rey last week.

Oviedo coach Jose Angel Ziganda has said he is keen to keep hold of the former Barcelona youngster – but it seems he may not get his wish.

According to El Desmarque, third-tier side Marbella FC are interested in signing Mujica, while Segunda B rivals Nastic and Hercules have also been linked.

 

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