By Alex Stevens
Ex-Swansea manager Garry Monk is the strong odds-on favourite to be the new Leeds manager following the sacking of Steve Evans.
The club released a statement on Tuesday night to confirm that the 53-year-old had become the sixth manager axed by Massimo Cellino in his two-year reign as owner.
Sky Bet made Monk the favourite to be the next Leeds manager on Tuesday afternoon and his odds shortened to 2/7 in the immediate wake of Evans’ dismissal.
The second favourite to replace Evans at the helm is Croatian Ivan Juric, who is a distant 12/1 with the bookmaker.
Former Swans centre-back Monk was appointed manager of the Premier League club in February 2014 following the sacking of Michael Laudrup.
Monk guided the club to top-flight survival, followed by an eighth-placed finish the following season with a record points tally. However, he was sacked last November following a poor run of results that left the club facing a relegation battle.
Evans has been given his marching orders even though Cellino admitted that the Scot had achieved the target he had been set when he was appointed last October of keeping the club in the Championship.
“I would like to thank Steve Evans for his efforts as the head coach of Leeds United,” Cellino said in a statement on the official Leeds website. “Steve completed the job he was brought in to carry out – to keep the team in the Championship – and his hard work here has been greatly appreciated. I wish him and [assistant] Paul Raynor the very best for the future.”
Leeds eventually finished 13th in the Championship, prompting Evans to declare his confidence in steering the club to a play-off spot next season.
However Cellino and his fellow board members want a different type of manager to the experienced Scot, who has steered Rotherham and Crawley to promotion during his career.
The Italian gave some insight into the profile of manager they are now looking for as well as the target for the next man in the dugout.
“We have decided that a different approach is required in order to achieve our targets for the new season,” Cellino added to the website.
“The club is now looking to appoint a new head coach to build on the good work of Steve and Paul and deliver the special season which our supporters deserve.”
Leeds, who have been publicly snubbed by MK Dons manager Karl Robinson and Bristol Rovers boss Darrell Clarke in the last week, also revealed that “the process to appoint a new head coach is underway and a further announcement will be made in due course”.