Leeds United manager Paul Heckingbottom has been in charge for less than three months but already rumours are starting to fly about his future at Elland Road.
The former Barnsley boss moved to their Yorkshire neighbours in February after Thomas Christiansen was axed after his seven months in charge, but he has been unable to reverse the abysmal form from the Whites while under the Danish manager.
Leeds have tasted victory just twice in 2018, both coming under Heckingbottom’s command, and the latest defeat at the hands of Aston Villa seemed to push him closer to a premature exit.
Football Insider exclusively revealed that the board at Elland Road were preparing to sack their second manager in less than half a year, a move which would see three bosses having left Elland Road in the space of a year.
However the Sun journalist Alan Nixon has suggested that Heckingbottom could well be planning for the long-term at the club, as he eyes up bringing a new senior coach to help support him with his duties.
If that is to be the case, and the new man comes into the club, then it is a guarantee that the Leeds board are willing to back the under-fire manager and that he will remain in the dug-out over the summer.
There is little chance that the Whites executives would be willing to spend cash in the form of wages on another coach at Heckingbottom’s request if they did not plan on keeping the manager at the helm for much longer, and it could well be another claim for compensation if they end up cutting their contracts short.
If the boss gets his wish, his long-term stay is a near-certainty, but if no-one arrives before summer, then he could well be booted out as claimed.
In other Leeds United news, the Whites’ bargain pursuit of a 26-year-old spells trouble for a senior mainstay.