Pablo Hernandez has been told to mend the rift between him and Marcelo Bielsa, as Leeds United’s season threatens to unravel. After a positive start to their first campaign back in the Premier League, back-to-back 4-1 defeats have taken the air out of their tyres.
During the drubbing against Leicester City, Hernandez was substituted by Bielsa, sparking an angry reaction.
The 35-year-old threw his armband to the ground, before kicking water bottles on the side.
Hernandez was left out of the trip to Crystal Palace, where they again conceded four times in another sobering defeat.
Bielsea suggested that Hernandez’s omission was purely tactical, with the Argentinian selecting a squad he felt would offer them the best chance of winning.
“Pablo is fit, he wasn’t in the squad for today’s game,” said Bielsa after Leeds’ were thumped at Selhurst Park.
“I evaluate all the players for the upcoming game and didn’t pick him for this game. If you feel the decision was strange, I choose the 18 players I feel are apt for the game.”
But former Leeds forward Noel Whelan, believes the issue wasn’t fixed up in the build-up to Saturday’s game, suggesting it was “unhealthy” to be carried into the weekend
“Obviously the club have not come out and said anything and I am sure they won’t,” he told Football Insider.
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“They will keep it in house but it seems to me, and I have fallen out with managers, that things may have carried on between Bielsa and Hernandez throughout the week, unfortunately.
“Generally, you would get a one-on-one with the manager on Tuesday, sit down and discuss what happened but it is Hernandez that needs to apologise. It seems to me like it has carried on through the week and that is not healthy for a squad.
“Players will feel the tension. They will know what is going on.
“He wasn’t injured but he wasn’t taken to the game – that says everything.
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“You cannot throw your armband down like that. It is disrespectful to the club. It is disrespectful to the players and the fans that are watching.
“He should have been straight in to Bielsa apologising. I do not understand why this rift has carried on.”
On Monday, Hernandez took to social media to apologise for his actions, claiming it did not describe his way of thinking.
“Apologies for my gesture the other day,” he wrote on his Instagram account.
“It was a reaction that does not describe my way of being or my way of thinking.”
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