Arsenal fans were desperately hoping for Leeds United to pull off a footballing miracle and get a result against Tottenham on Saturday afternoon. However, the word miracle is appropriate considering how The Peacocks defend under Marcelo Bielsa and the 4-0 loss was far from a surprise.
The Argentinian coach has since been sacked by Leeds with former RB Leipzig and Red Bull Salzburg head coach Jesse Marsch the favourite to take over from Bielsa, according to The Mirror. Arsenal still need to play Leeds again this season, however, the Gunners could be affected by the changeover more than simply just on-field matters.
From the transfer market to the visit of Leeds later this season, Arsenal will need to be prepared for what is bound to change with the removal of Bielsa.
Firstly, when Leeds arrive at the Emirates on the 7th of May, barring any rescheduling, this will be the antepenultimate fixture of the season. By this stage, Arsenal will have a much clearer idea of their end of season fortunes, hoping that their top-four race is very much still on. Possibly even secured.
However, by this time the new coach, be it Marsch or another manager, will have had a significant period of time and matches with the squad. The Gunners ran out easy winners at Elland Road earlier in the season with a 4-1 win but a very different Leeds is likely to oppose them in May.
The benefit is that for Mikel Arteta, Leeds will be less of an unknown quantity by that stage and there will be a lot of opportunities to assess what the new coach does.
Secondly is the ability for Arsenal to poach players from the club in the summer. Leeds are quickly becoming favourites to go down with the upturn in form of Newcastle United and Burnley.
If they do, players like Raphinha, Kalvin Phillips, Patrick Bamford and Joe Gelhardt will be primed to be looking for a swift route back to the top level.
For Arsenal, Raphinha stands out as a possible Nicolas Pepe replacement should the Ivorian move on. Meanwhile, Manchester City and Liverpool love to look at England internationals and also relegated talent. As seen with Andrew Robertson and Nathan Ake.
Arsenal will definitely be looking towards any potential opportunities that may arise should Leeds bite the bullet and head down to the Championship.
However, should it be the favourite Jesse Marsch who takes over, Arsenal may well expect competition in the market for certain players.
Marsch, having worked at Salzburg and Leipzig, knows the club system very well and Leeds have already been linked to USMNT’s Brenden Aaronson who is currently shining in Austria.
The Arsenal Way suggested midfielder Mohamed Camara as a possible replacement for Mohamed Elneny, he too could suddenly pop up on Leeds’ radar should they stay up.
Arsenal will definitely need to be wary of what Marsch could represent and furthermore, what he achieves. Should the American coach succeed and Arteta falters, perhaps his Premier League audition with the northern side could give the Gunners an insight into a potential future coach?
Hopefully, this does not need to happen, but it is certainly not one to turn a blind eye to.