BIELSA IN COURT: Leeds manager suing former club for €19m
Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa is in court suing French Ligue 1 club Lille for damages after they fired him in 2017.
The Argentine appeared in court via video link as he believes his former employers owe him €19million in damages and severance pay.
He was sacked in 2017 for "serious fault" and has previously lodged a filing against Lille but lost. He was ordered to pay €300,000 to them afterwards.
Bielsa appeared in court for around 20 minutes despite being unable to travel due to coronavirus restrictions.
A decision will not be known for around three months time and there is an appeals process afterward.
Laurent Blanc pocketed €22m in severance pay from Paris Saint Germain previously, but this is still a big case.
Bielsa in court over contract issue
The whole situation boils down to a contract issue.
When Bielsa joined Lille, there were two contract signed. One, signed on 14th February 2017, set out the financials - but was not delivered to the LFP (the French governing body for professional football)
The second, signed on 1st July 2017, was the only one delivered.
In the first one, Bielsa had agreed to a 'parachute clause' meaning his salary would be paid in full regardless.
However, the second document - the one submitted to the LFP - made no mention of such a clause.
His former club argue that they were justified to sack Bielsa because of the way he behaved publicly towards the club and its employees.
Bielsa, they add, was disrespectful and "adopted a systematic attitude of defiance".
Also, they allege he had an "aggressive and insulting manner" and used insulting words that prevented people doing their job.
They say that the only valid contract was the second one which was delivered to the LFP - rendering the first one null and void.
Should fans be worried about Bielsa in court?
Leeds fans may be concerned that their relationship with El Loco could end up a similar way.
However, Leeds fan Kieran Archer doesn't see it coming to that.
"I don't see that being a problem at Leeds," Kieran told the Bremner Square podcast.
"He's stayed at Leeds year after year. I think he's managed more Leeds games than anywhere he's been.
"I worry about him leaving Leeds at the end of his contract but I don't worry about it being on bad terms."
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