Marcelo Bielsa is a “real option” to take charge of Lille next season, general manager Marc Ingla confirmed while presenting Franck Passi as interim coach.
Bielsa garnered plaudits for his work at Marseille during 2014-15, using unorthodox systems to promote an attacking style of football.
The fiery Argentine famously quit Lazio just two days after being appointed last year but could be set for a return to Ligue 1 with Lille, who have chosen his former assistant at the Stade Velodrome Passi to lead the struggling side for the remainder of the campaign.
Lille have lost three successive matches and sit 17th in Ligue 1, one point clear of the bottom three.
Ingla told a media conference: “I thank Franck Passi for being here. He is the coach for the next four months.
“We will ask Franck to keep us in Ligue 1. We knew we would have problems at some point in the season and they showed up early.
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“I always said that Marcelo Bielsa was a real option for next season.
“There have been talks but until there is something official, I will not communicate it publicly.
“As of July, there may be another coach, but for now we are with Franck for the 13 remaining games.”
It has been reported that Passi could remain at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy as an assistant to Bielsa next season, but the Frenchman is not thinking that far into the future.
“I often speak with Bielsa. I called him on Sunday to tell him that I was going to join Lille,” said Passi.
“What I am going to do until the end of the season only concerns me. I chose to coach Lille and I will choose my future from June 30.”