Leeds United have sacked Javi Gracia after just 71 days in charge of the first team, after a poor run of results that leaves the club one place below the relegation places. Sam Allardyce has been hired as head coach for the remainder of the season.
Sporting director Victor Orta was also sacked a day earlier, with the club calling his departure “mutual consent” as they seek a “change of management.”
With just one point claimed from their last five Premier League games, Leeds are only outside the bottom three on goal difference heading into a weekend clash against Manchester City, one of four games remaining this season.
It marks a chaotic chapter in the club’s recent history, with its first campaign back in the top flight ending in a ninth-place finish under Marcelo Bielsa in 2020/21, but the popular manager was sacked last year after a terrible spell and Jesse Marsch pinned. The American kept Leeds up by three points and a place late on, but was in turn sacked on February 6 of this year with the club then in exactly the same position as it is now: 17th and out of the drop zone. in goal. difference – but also with a game in hand.
Gracia won his first game in charge two weeks later against Southampton, with positive results against Wolverhampton Wanderers and Nottingham Forest taken soon after, but just four points from a possible 21 since early April meant Gracia’s impact was minimal and time was running out. it will end A statement from the club thanked the Spanish coach and his coaches “for his efforts in difficult circumstances.”
With 18 goals conceded in the last five games alone, Leeds look in free fall as they head to the league leaders, with their last three games at home against Newcastle, away against West Ham and against Tottenham in a Difficult season ending.
Ultimately, Orta also paid the price for a succession of questionable transfers that failed to make the desired impact, as well as two managerial appointments that fell short of expectations.
A statement from owner Andrea Radrizzani said: “I am deeply saddened by the way this chapter has closed as Victor has been responsible for some of the greatest moments of my time as Leeds United owner and I thank him and his people. for all they have done. done in the last six years.
“However, it is clear that it is time to change course and for this reason we have agreed that Víctor will leave the club. I understand that the fans are hurt and upset, but now is the time for unity. We have four cup finals to play this season and by working together, I think we can survive.”
Former Oxford boss Karl Robinson will be Allardyce’s assistant, in what is the former England boss’s first job since leaving West Brom two years ago.
In a five-team fight to overcome the drop, Leicester and Forest are both on the same 30-point mark as Leeds, with Everton one further behind. Southampton is at the bottom, with 24 points, and the five teams have four to play.