Why Leeds United were right to sack Jesse Marsch

Jesse Marsch, Manager of Leeds United (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)
Jesse Marsch, Manager of Leeds United (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images) /

Leeds United recently relieved the duties of Jesse Marsch and most of his staff. The American manager was sacked after the defeat at Nottingham Forest.

Marsch was a controversial subject at Elland Road since taking over for club legend, Marcelo Bielsa, 11 months ago.

Following in the footsteps of a club legend is never an easy challenge but also add in the fact that the team was facing a crucial relegation battle to stay in the Premiership.

The Wisconsin native had just 12 games to pick up the morale of this group and implement his tactics enough to make a difference in the style on the pitch.

After many ups and downs through the final matches, the mighty whites were able to secure their position in the Premier League on the final day of the campaign.

Although this was a difficult feat, Marsch was never fully given the comfort level amongst the club’s supporters.

Naturally, the summer transfer window allowed the board to bring in more players familiar with the Marsch system. Many Red Bulls players were targeted by the board and ultimately signed.

This season began with some impressive victories, but the style of play never caught on with the players.

The flashes of brilliance would be evident in many matches, whether they ended in victory or defeat. The consistency just never came under Marsch. The most admirable aspect of the Marsch era was the character the team showed late in matches.

Many memories were created under Marsch’s reign that will never be forgotten.

In many ways, Marsch was the perfect manager and more importantly person for the job at the right time.

At the time of the change, Leeds was suffering lopsided defeats and appeared to be lost on defending.

The pressure on the players was building greater and greater as the table became more evident that relegation was not only a threat but likely.

The once exciting Bielsa ball had turned into defensive lapses and scoring became obsolete.

Defending was never elite under Bielsa, but the goals came often enough to make up for conceding. Either way, the style of football was exciting and fun to watch.

With Marsch at the helm, the tactics were narrower, and the team immediately kept the score close.

Three points did not always follow the closer matches, but the team was taking steps towards building confidence, but time and confidence were running out of time.

Even supporters of Marsch’s sacking would follow up their anger with a vote of confidence in the type of human being he displayed.

Marsch was positive and looking to build the players and the confidence of the squad up first and foremost. It may not have been the purpose of his hiring, but it certainly played a large role in staying up.

The culture at Thorpe Arch changed and the players were part of the plan and given trust by the coaching staff. A leadership group was formed and Marsch brought the team closer.

Because of this new culture, the players never gave up despite the enormous pressure and produced some gutsy goals in extra time.

Although Marsch’s time will not go down as tops in club history, his positive energy dragged this squad out of a low point and raised them up enough to remain in the Premier League.

For this Leeds, supporters can be thankful for Marsch and hope that a new tactical plan will elevate this group of talented players back to the middle of the table.