Even by Leeds United’s recent standards, the latest press conference conducted by Massimo Cellino was bizarre. Sitting with the returning Adam Pearson, who is back at Elland Road as chief executive officer, Cellino was non-committal on several occasions and even took time out for a cigarette break.

The one thing he was certain about was that he isn’t planning to sell Leeds right now. About the future of the coach for next season, the only certainty was that he wants to ensure he appoints the ‘right coach’ for the long term.

So Neil Redfearn’s future in charge remains uncertain. Redfearn’s contract expires at the end of June and the sooner a decision is made, the better it will be to ensure whoever is in charge for next season can start planning.

Whoever does lead Leeds into the 2015/16 campaign could be facing a difficult task. Leeds are just 10/3 with betfair to be relegated from the Championship when this article was produced, with only Rotherham, MK Dons and Huddersfield a shorter price. In terms of winning promotion back to the Premier League, Leeds are priced at 25/1.

Yet, given the size of the club, there will always be plenty of people linked with the manager’s job at Elland Road. Here, we take a look at five of those mentioned as being Leeds boss next season, including Redfearn.


Reports have claimed that Adkins has already been sounded out about replacing Redfearn next season and he is the favourite to take on the job. Adkins does have a pedigree when it comes to leading teams to promotion after twice taking Scunthorpe United into the Championship. He also led Southampton from League One to the Premier League before he was replaced by Mauricio Pochettino midway through the season. His sacking at the time seemed harsh, but given the way Southampton have progressed since then under Pochettino and now Ronald Koeman, you can’t say the club made a mistake. It also gave Adkins an insight into working at a club where you can never feel 100 per cent secure in your job. Adkins then spent 18 months at Reading, initially failing to keep them in the Premier League, before then being dismissed last December. If he wants to find out exactly how things work at Leeds then he could always give Brian McDermott – the man he succeeded at Reading – a call.


There always has to be a concern about a former favourite coming back to a club as manager. You only have to look at the experience of Gary McAllister for an example of how difficult it can be to replicate your success as a player at a club as a manager. Although that didn’t put Cellino off considering giving McAllister another chance last summer before Dave Hockaday got the job. Hasselbaink enjoyed two years at Leeds as a player in the late 1990s and finished joint-top scorer in the Premier League. As a manager, he is still relatively raw, but he has performed an excellent job since taking over at Burton Albion last November. He has guided the club into League One for the first time after winning the League Two title and he still has two years left on his contract. His agent has claimed that there has been interest from Leeds and Hasselbaink has not completely ruled out a role at Elland Road. However, he has said he is committed to Burton and he will also make any decision about his future with his head, rather than his heart. Given the current climate at Leeds, you would think that would mean he is not going to rush into taking the job, despite his history and affiliation with the club.


Jokanovic would certainly know what it is like to come into a potentially volatile situation as a manager where the owners are concerned given the trigger-happy nature at Watford prior to his appointment. Yet Jokanovic proved to be an inspired appointment at Vicarage Road as he oversaw the club’s automatic promotion back to the Premier League alongside Bournemouth.He has received a ‘very good offer’ to stay at Watford and there is reportedly a confidence he will sign a new contract. Yet his exploits have ensured there is plenty of interest in the former Chelsea midfielder, with speculation claiming he is on Cellino’s shortlist to be the next Leeds manager. Top-flight clubs Newcastle, Sunderland and West Ham are also reported to be keen on Jokanovic’s qualities as a manager. It would probably be a stretch to see Jokanovic turning down the chance of managing in the Premier League in favour of the Leeds job when outsiders are predicting a season of struggle next term. Stranger things have happened, though, and Jokanovic’s experiences at Watford could in one way make him the ideal fit for Leeds under the current regime.


The man currently in possession of the job, Redfearn has proved a reliable steadier of the ship, initially after Hockaday was sacked, and then again after the brief tenure of Darko Milanic. And, given the brief reigns of Hockaday and Milanic, it could be argued that Redfearn has done well to last as long as he has given he was appointed back in October. He has won a third of his games in charge and, while that isn’t spectacular, it was more than enough to keep Leeds out of the relegation dogfight in the closing weeks of the season as they finished 15th in the Championship. He has proven popular with the players and fans, but the suspension of his assistant Steve Thompson in early April didn’t exactly offer a demonstration of confidence or stability. Redfearn at least knows what it’s like to spend a few months working for the current owners, but it’s unclear whether he is the ‘right coach’ that Cellino is looking for. If he isn’t kept on as head coach, then he is going to be another club’s gain as he has demonstrated he has the qualities to be a success as a first-team manager.

8693235009_f73febba87UWE ROSLER

Among the leading names in the frame, Rosler saw his reputation take a knock following a wretched opening three months to the season which saw him sacked by Wigan Athletic. Prior to that, though, the former Manchester City striker had built up a reputation as a promising manager who is keen to play positive, attacking football. At Brentford, he lost the League One play-off final to Yeovil Town before having the club in a strong position for promotion prior to his departure for Wigan in December 2013. He took Wigan to the semi-finals of the FA Cup and into the Championship play-offs before losing to Queens Park Rangers narrowly over two legs. He certainly shouldn’t be judged on the latter months of his time at Wigan, which again offered Rosler the experience of people above him making knee-jerk decisions. He turned down the chance to coach German club 1860 Munich earlier this year as he is keen to have another go at managing in English football. He is available, which can probably be considered a plus, and there will be a hunger about him to prove his doubters wrong following his Wigan tenure.

23 Responses

  1. henrymouni

    It has always been about our players not being up to standard, rather than poor coaching, in most cases.
    I suppose Nigel Adkins would be a favourite along with Gus, as they are out of work, and decent, passionate coaches.
    No point naming Redders as Massimo has made his mind up!
    If we get 3 or 4 top Championship players in we have a chance.

    • Karl M

      That’s gonna be no chance then Henry, by the time Cellino makes his mind up the good players will have been signed up by our competitors, redders and Thommo were on a roll before the rug got pulled. A clever boss would put that back as it was and back them all the way. Cellino is Pissing me off, I’d take red bull any day because at least they would bring stable management to the club, I live in hope.

  2. chris

    Who in the right mind would want the leeds job?
    They will only be the coach not the manager…
    They won’t be allowed to choose players they really want to sign and prob only be allowed to pick half the team on match days,massimo needs to sell quick for me he’s got no decent direction at all….
    Plus he’s got loads of dodgy dealings hanging over him like flys around s**t and the football league will be ready to pounce big time, more than anything just want stability at our club,for me this man massimo won’t be able to deliver!
    M.o.t always

  3. PAUL W

    If the badly treat Redfearn ends up going, then lets have someone who also knows the Championship and not a clueless coach from abroad, but let’s hope that the decision is made very quickly, one way or another.
    Nigel Adkins certainly has a good track record, but the very impatient Cellino, will expect instant wins, which is not always possible at a high profile club like Leeds, where the opposing teams always raise their game, in their twice a season cup finals against Leeds.
    Hasselbaink would also be a good choice as a motivator, but some of Leeds more fragile players might take offence to his discipline and shouting, however he is still learning and the Leeds job might be too soon for him.
    Cellino keeps being totally disrespectful about Coaches being like watermelons, but what about owners and chairman ?. Surely they are in the same category, particularly certain people, who get through 30 odd Coaches in twenty years and still believe that they are the perfectly successful, football master brain, which they certainly aren’t.

  4. henrymouni

    Every season we start with a ‘depleted’ team, having sold anyone who would attract money.
    The coach is beaten before he starts.
    All the decent available players are snapped up by other teams.
    All successful coaches have a good squad.

  5. chareose

    You missed Gary Mac, hes recently thrown his hat in……. said hed work for leeds in almost any capacity

  6. mrbigwheels

    ‘The Hock’ seems to be well thought of this week.
    Darko is on the payroll and ready to go.
    Brian McD is laughing his hair off… again.

    There’s a cheap lively young Italian at soon to be in Serie B Calgariiiiiie… quite keen and it has been rumoured a chomping at the bit… younger S’Alex is very interested.

    There!. Watch this space. You have been warned.

  7. dave cottle

    If we really want to get rid of NR I think the best bet is mark Warburton won’t be phased by the size of the club and has a strong will well what do we think oh and he is now available

  8. oldschoolbaby

    Whatever we think of NR, and I think he`s done enough to justify a contract extension, no one can deny his commitment and work ethic. Belittling him in a 3rd rate Sunday rag is not acceptable. It can hardly be difficult to inform him, with some gratitude and dignity, that his contract will not be renewed. This pantomime period of tedious limbo can serve no other purpose other than a showcase for Cellino`s naked, and TSS hit the nail on the head here, narcissism.

    • Irving08

      I agree with all that OS, but fairness requires us to be critical too of the way the local print and radio media, supported by self-styled fans’ spokespersons, have framed the issues as one of Cellino versus Redfearn, Leeds lads versus the Italians and so on. I support the extension of Redfearn’s contract on grounds of decency and short-term stability. I do not approve of management by humiliation, nor do I think much is lost by giving Redfearn half a season or so to show us what, undistracted, he can do. I am not persuaded by the argument that he is indispensable to the further progress of our younger players, who might well benefit by being handed on to a coach with higher level qualifications. Yet Redfearn still gets my qualified support. I don’t see what Cellino has to lose by extending his contract either – he just needs to rise above our localism and rein in his self-regard. But I still do not think Redfearn gets to pick his Assistant – but that’s a different debate.

  9. PMH

    This is all pointless. The current position of Leeds coach is impossible for any one to succeed in. And anyone who signs on for Cellino abuse, because that is what they will get, needs their head examining. The only saving grace is that the position is temporary. You will only have to serve very little of your two year contract. So you can put some money in the bank providing you can tolerate don’t mind three months of torture.

  10. mrbigwheels

    Well he’s not the man we need but…. Cellino is the Coach. ‘he’s angry like me’.
    The sunday ‘he’s a baby’ rant, is Cellino talking about himself.
    Expect Darko… very soon.

      • mrbigwheels

        I’ll add to this Henry…

        Anger drives people to unbelievable thoughts and options.
        Cellino is so cross with Redfearn not doing as he’s told, ban or no ban, ’tis the end. Cellino doesn’t love him any more, hence he’s going to leave the Club.
        We had the assistant coach suspended without explanation… to any one, (forget Salerno). Who sorted that I wonder?.
        Six players are injured, unfit to play all on the same day of which possibly only two were genuine. Who sorted that I wonder?.
        Cellino is around the Club for two weeks and then cries over NR not coming to see him at his welcome back party despite no one from Thorpe Arch being invited. Who sorted that I wonder?.
        And then….. Cellino has a bender on fags and vino… with the Press, in fact, actually putting two fingers up to the fans… while he’s on ‘it’.
        No more wondering now!.

        That’s to date… Further Anger and thoughts, with a tad of ‘what the f…’ are all these idiots costing me? leads Cellino to concentrate on what he needs in the shorter term with no matchday for weeks.

        Pre-season and Squad preparation.

        ‘Ah… I have someone costing me £7692.00 a week, doing f/a’.

        Expect Darko soon… imo.


      • henrymouni

        I have never known you so angry Mr B!
        Let us pray our new Executive Director can get a grip of things (Massimo’s danglers) .
        If we get a top coach and 4 good signings all is forgiven – almost!
        Live for the moment Mr B.
        It is always Darko before the Dawn!

      • mrbigwheels

        I am Henry…

        Toys are being thrown by me… everywhere.
        I need to go for a walk, have a fag, then some vino when I return…… Then I’ll sack a poor good soul for measure.

        Action Henry… that’s what we need.
        Onwards and Upwards.

      • oldschoolbaby

        You have an earth mother wife, with attitude and a pet baby snow leopard. My jealousy knows no bounds

      • henrymouni

        Wait till you meet the mother-in-law, and my nephew young Billy!!
        I think we could run the club between us!

      • oldschoolbaby

        Young Billy needs to get into European politices before the referendum. He could cause quite a stir. On the home front he certainly looks angry enough to meet Cellino`s criteria of a fit and proper person.
        I am actually the world`s only devotee of George W Bush. He gave my mother in law a visa to live across the pond. Yours needs deporting too by the look of her

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