Spanish football blogger Chalkontheboots will be examining, in depth, the modern foundations and structure of Athletic Bilbao. From Athletic’s distinctive transfer policy to Marcelo Bielsa’s tactical innovations, nothing is left out. Part one comprises of an introduction to the piece, and begins analysis by reviewing the relationships between key members of the club. Parts two, three and four will feature on A Football Report over the next two weeks.
“The condition of Lezama is an insult to the players and I am responsible for them … You can’t have a squad worth €300 million and not proper playing fields … To start the season in conditions such as these makes a mockery of me as a coach because I am the one responsible for the working conditions being this way.”
Marcelo Bielsa’s words during an extraordinary press conference in which he attacked the quality of workmanship during the ongoing refurbishment works at Athletic Bilbao’s Lezama training ground. That a manager would become embroiled publicly in such an issue encapsulates Bielsa perfectly, succinctly addressing why he is known as “el loco” (the madman).