Mauricio Pochettino tells an incredibly bizarre Marcelo Bielsa story

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Blaise Bourgeois

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If Leeds are promoted at the end of the season, there will be a pair of Argentine managers in the Premier League who know each other very well.

Back when Mauricio Pochettino was barely a teenager, Marcelo Bielsa successfully recruited the current Spurs boss to play at Argentine side Newell’s Old Boys.

Pochettino went on ESPN Brasil to tell the bizarre story of how Bielsa was able to convince Pochettino’s parents to let him play for his club.

“One night, at one in the morning, he came to my house, knocked on the door and wanted to see a 13-year-old boy,” Mauricio Pochettino told ESPN Brasil’s Natali Gedra.

“He tried to convince my parents to let me travel 200km, to Rosario, which was the distance from my city, Murphy.

“He wanted to see my legs! At this time of the morning, he would have to be a little… he had to make my parents dream.

“Then he said: ‘these legs look like those of a very good player’. That was a good lie, no bad intentions.”

Pochettino then went on to have a successful playing career and represented his native Argentina while Bielsa was in charge at the 1999 Copa América and the 2002 FIFA World Cup.

The Spurs boss has previously faced Bielsa as a manager and hopes to go head-to-head with Bielsa once again, this time in the Premier League.

“I already faced him in Spain. And it’s a pleasure to see him, to greet him, and to play against his teams is always a beautiful challenge.

“For me, he’s a person I will always admire. People call him ‘El Loco Bielsa’, but for me, he is not crazy at all.

“For me, he’s a genius. A person with charisma and a personality very different from us normal coaches, and that’s what makes him special.”

There is absolutely no doubt in our minds that Marcelo Bielsa is indeed a special, special manager.

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