Nearly two weeks on from Jesse Marsch‘s departure at Elland Road, Leeds United are no closer to appointing their next manager, with interim boss Michael Skubala set to take the reins for crucial upcoming fixtures against relegation rivals Everton and Southampton…
What is the latest Leeds manager news?
The U21 coach has taken temporary control of the first-team squad and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future, the club has announced, following two ‘positive’ performances against Manchester United.
The west Yorkshire side only picked up one point in last week’s double-header but it did look like there were improvements on the pitch. Meanwhile, off it, they have struggled to find a successor to the sacked American.
Should Leeds appoint Skubala permanently?
Rayo Vallecano’s Andoni Iraola, Arne Slot of Feyenoord, ex-Ajax boss Alfred Schreuder – who was in the stands for the latter fixture – and Marcelo Bielsa’s old assistant Carlos Corberan have all been deemed leading candidates at one stage or another, though no move has materialised.
Three of the four have seemingly rejected the chance to manage Leeds, with the latter signing a new contract at West Bromwich Albion, whilst out-of-work managers such as Steven Gerrard and Nuno Espirito Santo are now also being considered.
What are Skubala’s chances of landing it full-time?
As frustrations continue to grow for chairman Andrea Radrizzani and director of football Victor Orta, you would imagine that Skubala has every chance of winning the job full-time, especially if he guides the side to much-needed victories in their next two outings.
Six points from six against the Toffees and the Saints would create some legroom between themselves and the relegation zone and that form will be very hard for the Elland Road hierarchy to ignore.
Manchester Evening News contributor Conor McGilligan has also backed the 40-year-old to get the gig, claiming:
“You can tell on the pitch the players are working for him. And I just feel like he’d get the best out of this side with the options available at the minute. I don’t think we’ve got many options.
“Why not just stick with Skubala if there are no better options available?”
Neil Redfearn 2.0?
Whilst there is no denying that Leeds have looked like a far greater threat under the tutelage of the former England futsal head coach, it would still be an unmitigated disaster to appoint him permanently, given their past blunders and the ambition of the club.
Back in 2014, the Whites’ former controversial chairman Massimo Cellino finally handed Neil Redfearn the manager’s role after three caretaker stints in charge, with the side languishing near the relegation zone.
The 57-year-old initially oversaw a turnaround in form, moving the team closer to midtable but everything went south by the summer. Still in charge at the time, Cellino launched a scathing attack on his manager, describing Redfearn as “weak” and “like a baby” to the Sunday Mirror (via Sky Sports).
Of course, Radrizzani isn’t erratic and outspoken like the Italian before him but it does suggest that caretaker stints merely incite a small ‘new manager bounce’ before reverting back to type, and Leeds – truthfully – could do a lot better.
Take Marcelo Gallardo for example. He’s out of work but wants to wait until the summer – why not give him an offer he cannot refuse? Even the likes of Nuno and Gerrard would be better in the long run, because at least they have more experience managing at the level.
Either way, Radrizzani and co risk the wrath of repeating one of Cellino’s major managerial mistakes if they were to keep Skubala on past the current campaign.
AND in other news, Skubala could make his 1st big Leeds change by unleashing “spectacular” 20 y/o dynamo…