Marcelo Bielsa quits Lazio after just two days in charge

Despite officially announcing his arrival, the Argentine has once again changed his mind

bielsa, swansea, off the ball, tim vickery

Picture by: Claude Paris / AP/Press Association Images

After revolutionising Chilean football and having a huge impact in his time at Athletic Bilbao, Marcelo Bielsa remains one of the most sought after managers in the game at the moment. 

That should come as little surprise, given both Pep Guardiola and Jorge Sampaoli have often cited him as an influence, and Lazio seemed to have secured quite a coup when it was announced by the club that he had officially joined them as manager.

"Lazio can now announce that the contract of Mr Marcelo Bielsa and his assistants has been signed," a club statement read earlier this week, adding that "the coach and his staff will be in Rome on Saturday July 9."

However, Lazio confirmed in a statement on their website that 'el loco' has changed his mind and now will not be arriving in Italy at all. 

The wording of the announcement from the Italian club makes clear their anger at the situation, saying that they announce "with astonishment the resignation of Mr. Marcelo Bielsa [...] in clear violation of the commitments as undertaken in the contracts signed and properly registered with the League and Federazione Italiana Giuoco Calcio last week, in line with their procedures," suggesting there may be further legal fall out to the decision.

Simone Inzaghi will take charge of the team in the interim as they look for another manager, but the sudden u-turn from Bielsa may have something to do with the vacancy that the Argentine national side has at the moment. 

After retiring from the national side, the Argentine Football Association (AFA) are trying their best to move heaven and earth to get Messi back in the fold, for financial as well as footballing reasons, and may be looking to bring in a top class manager who can give the team the footballing identity which they have so sorely lacked in recent years.

After making it to four finals and losing in each of them, Messi decided to call it a day with the national side, but it was rumoured that he has told the AFA he will return if they can install a manager who can spearhead an exciting project

While Diego Simeone was the name mentioned in reports, or possibly Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino, the AFA may have contacted Bielsa to try and convince him to return to the helm as manager for a second time, and look to lure Messi back at the same time by creating a real mood of excitement around the squad.

As an organisation that is currently in complete disarray, this may solve some of their problems, but they have a long way to go, given Bielsa is known for demanding a huge amount of control both on and off the pitch. In that regard, he may be exactly what they need at the moment.