Championship

TT Introduces: The decline of Garry Monk

TT Introduces: The decline of Garry Monk

Leeds United have had a strong start to the new Championship season having taken 18 points from their first eight fixtures.

They currently sit top of the Championship table — one point ahead of Tony Pulis’ Middlesbrough side — and much credit has to go to Marcelo Bielsa who has done a fantastic job thus far since taking over in the summer.

However, had Garry Monk not have jumped ship for Middlesbrough last summer, it could have been him winning all of the plaudits at Elland Road instead.

Monk’s first and only season at Leeds was a promising one. He guided the Yorkshire club to a seventh place finish with 75 points — five points away from the last play off spot — and, with Andrea Radrizzani eventually gaining full control from Massimo Cellino, the foundations were slowly being laid for something potentially special to happen.

Monk, though, now finds himself at Championship strugglers Birmingham City — who are currently 20th in the table — following an unsuccessful stint at Middlesbrough where he was sacked. And with both Middlesbrough and Leeds now doing well, Monk will certainly have some regrets, especially considering where he has come from.

During his time in the Premier League as Swansea City manager, Monk was often praised for following on with the style of football previous bosses Michael Laudrup and Brendan Rodgers had the team playing and was seen as one of the most promising young coaches in the country.

The former Swansea player was, of course, relieved of his duties back in 2015 after a string of poor results. However, his dismissal at the Welsh club did no harm to his reputation and he was later given the gig at Leeds in the Championship, a gig that he should have persisted with.

Since leaving Elland Road, his managerial credentials have come into question and his pride must really have taken a hit having to witness Bielsa spearhead an assault on promotion to the Premier League and the Championship title when it so easily could have been him.

Instead, Monk and Birmingham look set for a relegation battle in a season that could be the final nail in the coffin for a young and talented coach who once showed so much promise.

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