In an interview with Sky Sports, Leeds United owner Andrea Radrizzani admits that it was a mistake in naming Thomas Christiansen as their head coach last summer. The club have since sacked him and replaced him with Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom.
Radrizzani highlighted the fact that Christiansen had no prior experience or exposure to English football, particularly at Sky Bet Championship level. And for that, he says in hindsight it was an error to hand the Spaniard the managerial reins at Elland Road. Leeds now have Heckingbottom at the helm, who guided Barnsley into this division a few seasons ago.
44-year-old Christiansen had past managerial experience in Cypriot football with AEK Larnaca and APOEL, and was a shock appointment in June 2017, replacing Garry Monk. Radrizzani admits this appointment probably should not have happened in the first place,
“The last months and performances were really poor, particularly in the way these results came.
“When there is a change of coach it is difficult for everyone.
“I’m happy we’ve found someone (Heckingbottom) who knows the territory and the league very well. This is something I underestimated in the previous choice (Christiansen). I did a mistake. I apologise to the fans for the lack of results. I invite them to support Leeds. The season is still on, we’ve proved we can beat any team, we’ve proved we can score and play good football. We need to believe we can turn it positive.”
Heckingbottom takes charge of his first match as Leeds United manager this weekend in a Yorkshire derby, when they travel to Bramall Lane to face Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United on Saturday lunchtime.