Marsch replaced Marcelo Bielsa on February 28 and was given the task of keeping Los Blancos in the Premier League – a job he finished with a win at Brentford on Sunday. The former RB Leipzig boss won four and drew three of his 12 games as Leeds fell in and then out of the drop zone in the final week of the season. Burnley’s loss at home to Newcastle meant a point would have been enough, but Jack Harrison’s stoppage-time winner ultimately gave Marsch’s men a three-point safety cushion.
Full-time Marsch’s name was announced by the 1,800 away supporters as the club pulled together after weeks of stress and worry, with results elsewhere increasing the pressure in the latter stages of the season .
It hasn’t been easy for Marsch off the pitch either. Supporters took umbrage at his suggestion that he arrived to find an overtrained side, something he insists was not an attack on Bielsa, and there was a mixed reaction to his insistence that the 4-0 loss to Manchester City felt in many ways. ‘ as a victory.
Speaking after that home defeat, in which Leeds conceded two goals from set pieces and then succumbed to the now-champions quality late on, Marsch said: “If we think we can play like that against City, we can play like that against anyone. On the scoresheet it’s a loss, but it’s a win in many ways. At 4-0, that’s a crazy thing to say but I really believe in it.”
Marsch has now addressed the media response to that particular quote and believes it’s part of a desire to make fun of him for being American.
“We were actually playing pretty well in the game, we lost 4-0 and I said in the press conference that in many ways it was a win and people here are going crazy. “, he told Charlie Stilitano and Neil Barnett on the American broadcaster SiriusXMFC. The football show. “The media in England is so ridiculous. Anything the American says he wants to skip and then he wants to ridicule and find holes. It doesn’t matter. I don’t care, I don’t change who I am, I’m going to be the leader I want to be and work hard with the group I work with and find ways to grow and improve and be successful, that’s what we did.”
Marsch’s main argument about Manchester City’s loss was that these games must still provide positive and tangible benefits for the team’s long-term growth, even if the scoreline doesn’t immediately reflect that. “You have to grow stronger from the experience of playing them,” he added.
He believes that while some of the treatment he suffered as an American in the English game is based on what happens on the pitch, he also suffered “a form of prejudice”.
“I said from the start that there are a lot more horrible things going on in the world than being ridiculed for my accent or being American,” he said.
“We can call it what you want, xenophobia or whatever, but it’s a form of prejudice. Some people don’t allow this kind of behavior to happen and treat me based on who I am or who I am. is our team, it’s ultimately what it should be “It’s frankly ridiculous that they don’t like to hear an American accent in their sport, in their country, it’s horrible. But I agree, I can handle it and nothing like that happens in our team. totally the opposite, we have total conviction, commitment, the guys reacted very well to my style of leadership, they like the type of football we play. I’m a great communicator, so I try to involve everyone so they feel part of what we’re doing and that’s what galvanized our group more than anything. »
According to Marsch, he mainly keeps himself up to date with what is written about Leeds so he can respond to any potential negativity surrounding the individuals in his squad.
“They send me media information every day and I try to get a quick overview of what they are saying about our players so that we can manage any negativity within our squad,” he said.
“Guys who have played here or come from England know what the media is like and don’t pay much attention to it either.”
Marsch signed a deal until 2025, when he was appointed, having originally been named as Bielsa’s summer successor. Now that his first task – keeping Leeds in the top flight – has been ticked off, he can get to grips with the summer rebuild that needs to take place in order to give him the squad he and his style of football need ahead of a full first game. . season in charge.