In the summer of 2016, Leeds appointed Garry Monk as manager of the club.
The manager had been sacked by Swansea at the end of 2015 after an 12 year association with the club, and many thought that the manager had been treated harshly by The Swans. He had had a lot of success with the south Wales club as a manager, finishing the season before in eighth place in the Premier League with a record points tally.
Nevertheless, Leeds were very happy with this signing, believing that they had appointed a high quality manager. A lot of fans wanted Chairman Massimo Cellino to provide funds to build the squad into a force in the Championship.
The club had gone through financial troubles in the past seasons, including Cellino, who had faced legal problems in his home country of Italy. Therefore, being able to attract a manager as respected as Monk was still seen as a major coup for the club.
This is what the fans had to say:
Yes!!, Fantastic appointment, cellino needs to give him time and stay out of team affairs.
— Luke Hollick (@_Hollick) June 2, 2016
give him time and good money to spend now I beg
— Sean Markey (@sdm_1205) 2 June 2016
now give him some spending money
— chris brady (@carpitone) 2 June 2016
YES! What a fantastic appointment!! #lufc
— Lee Thompson (@lufcThommo) 2 June 2016
extremely happy with this, exactly what we need strong appointment that! #lufc
— Tom Johnson (@TommyJA3) 2 June 2016
we have a decent manager at last, let’s give him a chance to build a team
— Dave Thomas (@daveskinhead69) 4 June 2016
well done Gary all the best…get Leeds back in PL then in Europe where we belong!
— Ben Goddard (@BenGoddard40) 3 June 2016
I’m just amazed that we attracted a manager with credibility
— Jamie Collins (@JGCollins_) 2 June 2016
Great Appointment, Now Cellino let him do his job.
— Dylan O Moore (@OMooreDylan19) 2 June 2016
credit where it’s due, good appointment
— . (@robw123q) 2 June 2016
Ultimately, Monk failed to deliver the successful promotion season which the Whites faithful have been craving for the best part of fifteen years, but he came closer than most to transforming the club.
Leeds finished just 5 points behind Fulham in the playoff places following a promising season under Monk – the club’s best finish since Kevin Blackwell carried them to a 5th place finish in the 2005/06 season.
It wasn’t to be in the end for Monk as he departed at the end of the season but, if Leeds had squeezed their way into the playoffs that season, the shift in mentality would have given them a huge advantage in their long-standing bid to return to the top-flight.
Leeds fans – thoughts on Monk? Let us know below!