Monday, 25 March 2013

Leeds United: The runners and riders to replace Neil Warnock

By James Grayson (Twitter - @jamesAgrayson)
With Nigel Adkins on the verge of being appointed the new Reading manager, Leeds have missed out on one of their best candidates for the manager’s job when Neil Warnock steps down. Adkins was sacked by Southampton earlier this year after two successive promotions with the Saints and was widely seen as the man to take the Whites back to the Premier League.
Sports Performer accesses the other (in no particular order) candidates:

Gus Poyet – Skybet odds 7/1
Poyet is an outsider, but does have an affinity to Leeds after being Dennis Wise’s assistant six years ago. However, Poyet is in a comfortable position at Brighton and has money to spend as the Brighton hierarchy persuaded him to turn down the advances of Reading. Poyet is probably an unviable option to Leeds as it would cost a fortune to compensate Brighton.
Likelihood – Unlikely
Paulo DiCanio – Skybet odds 3/1
GFH would be mad to appoint such a character. The Swindon chief executive described his reign at the County Ground as like managing with a hand grenade. Leeds don’t the need the publicity Di Canio brings. Swindon needed someone like that to reignite the interest in their club. Leeds need a manager who will quietly get them into the Premier League without fuss. But will GFH see it that way?
Likelihood – Possible
Phil Parkinson – Skybet odds 25/1
Parkinson has done a magnificent job at Bradford City in the sense of getting them to the League Cup final. However, he has not achieved his objective of getting them promotion. The Leeds job would be a step too far for him at the moment. Parkinson also failed at Hull City when he was given a shot at the chance of managing a Championship club in 2006.
Likelihood - Unlikely
Steve McClaren – Skybet odds 25/1
As Leeds fan, McClaren could be seen as the perfect fit for Leeds. Currently unemployed after leaving FC Twente would require no compensation, which would attract GFH. But, he does have black marks. The England experience is one and the other is the calamitous short spell in the Championship with Nottingham Forest.
Likelihood - Possible
Alan Curbishley – Skybet odds 28/1
Curbishley would be a steady choice, but he has been out of the game for four years since leaving West Ham. However, he’s a respected figure and would have the backing of the players from day one.
Likelihood - Likely
Owen Coyle – Skybet odds 14/1
Coyle is a manager who likes to get his teams playing football in the right way. He took a club like Burnley into the Premier League by passing the ball and this style of play would be welcomed by Leeds fans. Neil Warnock likes to play route one football which has infuriated them. He’s available and certainly worth an interview.
Likelihood - Possible
Karl Robinson – Skybet odds 25/1
MK Dons boss Robinson was linked to the job when Simon Grayson left. But he’s still probably not ready for the step-up. Had MK Dons won promotion last season, Robinson would be a viable candidate. He’s one for the future, but he's not the man for this moment.
Likelihood - Unlikely
Gareth Southgate – Skybet odds 16/1
A likeable and media friendly guy, Southgate can talk a good game. But does his managerial credentials fit the bill for Leeds? Probably not. Southgate is someone who would impress at any interview, but Leeds need someone with proper managerial experience. He managed Middlesbrough in the Premier League, but all he managed to achieve was getting them relegated. GFH need to look elsewhere.
Likelihood - Possible
Brian McDermott – Skybet odds N/A
He got Reading up under the radar. That makes McDermott an ideal man to lead Leeds to the Premier League. Quiet and unassuming, McDermott would make Leeds a team that people like and respect and he would go about his business without fuss. GFH have to take a look.
Likelihood - Likely

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