Pontus Jansson delivers verdict on Monk resignation at Leeds
By Derek Smithson
Leeds defender Pontus Jansson has paid credit to Garry Monk following his departure from the club on Thursday.
Monk handed in his resignation at Elland Road and the Whites are now on the search for a new manager.
The 38-year-old was a highly popular figure at the club during his 12-month spell and managed to restore belief of a Premier League return.
They finished 13th-placed in the 2015/16 season and looked destined for many more years in the Championship, but Monk’s side pushed for a play-off spot last campaign and ended up just short in seventh.
Jansson was one of the major successes under Monk’s tenure and has explained the shock at his former boss’ departure.
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“I liked Garry enormously. It was really shocking to me if I’m honest,” Jansson told Swedish outlet Fotboll Skanalen. “He’s been awesome, a really nice person, good football coach. He’s meant a lot to many, not just for me.
“He gave me confidence, above all, time for me to mature as a player and person. He believed in me from day one. He has taught me a lot. We have had our tussles, but we’ve always had respect for each other and knew we liked each other.”
Jansson was a major part of a solid Leeds defence that was built by Monk and he formed a brilliant partnership alongside loanee Kyle Bartley.
The centre-back pairing were one of the toughest combinations in the league and Jansson was even named in the EFL team of the season after his impressive performances.
Monk is now expected to continue his managerial career elsewhere and bookmakers Sky Bet have priced him as the favourite to become the next Crystal Palace boss.
He has now experienced positive spells at Swansea and Leeds, making him one of the most exciting young English managers around.
In other Leeds news, Eddie Gray believes the club most move quickly to appoint a new manager.