Marseille manager resigns one match into French Ligue 1 season

Written By Michael Huguenin
MarceloBielsa - Cropped
AFP

Marcelo Bielsa has resigned as coach of Marseille just one game into the French Ligue 1 season.

Marseille was beaten 1-0 by Caen on Saturday, prompting the fiery Argentine to leave the Stade Velodrome one year into a contract set to take him through 2017.

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Bielsa surprisingly announced his decision to quit in front of the media before telling his squad.

"I have finished my work here," Bielsa said at his post-match news conference. "I will return to my country."

"I put everything I had into this team."

In his one full season at the Stade Velodrome, Bielsa, 60, led Marseille to a fourth-place finish — 14 points behind Paris Saint-Germain.

In the classic fashion of a Bielsa-coached side, Marseille started inconsistently as they became used to his high-octane style. But an eight-match winning streak from August into October saw the south coast club storm to the top of the standings.

As the season wore on, however, Marseille began to run out of steam — winning just two league games in February, March and April, including four straight defeats to complete that period — and would eventually miss out on UEFA Champions League qualification.

Bielsa also had a falling out with club management throughout his short tenure — most noticeably refusing to play Brazilian defender Doria, who was signed without the Argentine's blessing.

The former Athletic Bilbao, Chile and Argentina coach claimed he is not leaving Marseille to take up another job.

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