Jesse Marsch on how Raphinha long throw-in emerged as Leeds boss chats Illan Meslier transfer talks

Leeds boss Jesse Marsch has explained how a ‘long throw-in competition’ at Thorp Arch paved the way for Raphinha’s new secret weapon to emerge into United’s game-play.

The Whites are in their best run of form of the season, having gone five games unbeaten. It gives them a genuine chance of avoiding the relegation trapdoor, with Marsch brought in to replace Marcelo Bielsa in February. That said, Burnley have managed to close the gap recently played four times in between Leeds matches v Watford and Crystal Palace.

United’s last outing – a largely-forgettable 0-0 draw at Selhurst Park – saw Leeds unearth a new tactic – a long-throw-in from Brazilian winger Raphinha.

The approach caught many by surprise given it’s not something the talented winger is known for.

Explaining how the situation emerging, Marsch claims it was the result of a bit of fun of Thorp Arch.

“We had a contest in training. All said no, but my money was on Raph and he did [have the longest throw],” Marsch joked.

“It’s dangerous and we will use it more in the future. We don’t have a throw-in coach like Liverpool, but we will try to be dangerous.”

Leeds go into Saturday’s difficult test against leaders Manchester City with a new injury set-back. However, there is a good news about Patrick Bamford who might be back in action far sooner than expected.

Jesse Marsch on more compact Leeds

another way Leeds United set up at Palace was to be far more compact, with Raphinha and Jack Harrison not hogging the touchline as much as previously.

Asked about the approach, Marsch added: “In all areas we have so much work to do still. We have gotten results and fought in front of goal to do everything not to concede has helped us gain momentum.

“But more things to be much better at on both sides of the ball. The team always draw on their mentality and fight for each other. We are getting better with the ball and counter pressing. Transition moments, creating clear chances. There is daily work; we’re very happy.”

Asked how this Leeds side mirror him as a coach, Jesse Marsch added: “Hard work. aggression. Defensively working. Fighting for everything. Trying to entertain.

“Not so effective in the attacking department as I would like but we’re showing up defensively was the most important thing.”

Illan Meslier forms a bonus for Leeds

One man who did show his true colors at Palace was goalkeeper Illan Meslier.

The French keeper made some excellent stops at Selhurst Park to help preserve Leeds’ clean sheet.

At times he was left badly exposed under Bielsa’s tactics. that said, his saves have brought him to the attention of the likes of Barcelona.

Asked if Leeds are keen to keep him, Marsch made his feelings clear.

“In general, I have been happy with everyone’s commitment to be here. It’s unique within our group. There is a lot of talent too.

“When you talk Raphinha and Kalvin [Phillips]big players for us, Illan’s potential is huge.

“The best thing from him is more confidence in recent weeks. He’s more stable. He did not train at all before Watford and came into the match being flawless. That was a big moment in his career. We need goalkeepers who are ready all the time.”

Marsch, meanwhile, has also explained why Leeds won’t be scared following their 7-0 drubbing at City earlier this season.

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