Paul Heckingbottom couldn’t turn Leeds down


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New Leeds United head coach Paul Heckingbottom insists he couldn’t turn down the opportunity after leaving local rivals Barnsley for Elland Road on Tuesday.

The Whites have appointed Heckingbottom on a one-and-a-half year deal, just a week after he signed a new contract with the Tykes.

Leeds moved quickly after sacking Thomas Christiansen on Sunday and Heckingbottom will now be in charge for Saturday’s trip to Bramall Lane to face Sheffield United.

He will be joined by first-team coach Jamie Clapham and the 40-year-old admits the chance to work at Elland Road was one he could not turn down, despite his relationship with Barnsley.

“I can’t wait, it’s a big opportunity, a big football club and something you work hard for, so I’m planning to make the most of it,” Heckingbottom told SkySports.

“When I spoke to Victor and the owners [it was] really aligned in what I was thinking and how I like to work and I’m presuming that’s why they thought I was the right man for the job as well because I’m aligned with how they like to work, so hopefully that’ll be good for us going forward.”

Leeds have not won since Boxing Day when they beat Burton and they have now fallen seven points outside the Championship play-offs places.

Sheffield United are 1.85 favourites to win this weekend, with the draw 3.50, while Leeds are outsiders at odds of 4.33.

Their recent form has also seen their promotion odds drift and the Whites are now 21.00 to reach the Premier League this season.

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