Leeds: Mikel Antia to join Javi Gracia at Elland Road
Coach Mikel Antia looks set to make the move to Leeds United to work alongside Javi Gracia for the first time, according to Beren Cross for Leeds Live.
The Lowdown: Antia profiled
The 50-year-old has experience of being an assistant manager in the Premier League. The Spaniard worked under Rafael Benitez at Newcastle United for 136 games between 2016 and 2019 and is currently in the MLS with Charlotte.
He was a part of Miguel Angel Ramirez’s backroom team and has been assistant to current manager Christian Lattanzio for 20 games (as per Transfermarkt), but it looks as if a return to England is on the cards.
The Latest: Antia to link up with Gracia at Leeds
Cross shared a story for Leeds Live on Wednesday evening regarding Gracia’s backroom staff setup. He said that Zigor Aranalde will once again be the 52-year-old’s assistant, while Juan Solla is also set to work with Gracia once again.
However, Cross added that Antia is set to work under the new Whites manager on a coaching basis for the first time, with the two having played together at Real Sociedad in the late 1990s.
The Verdict: Wise move?
Although Antia has never worked under Gracia, there is still a connection from their time at Sociedad as players. He would bring previous experience of coaching in England, so it could be a wise move by the new Leeds boss in the short run.
Michael Skubala also looks set to remain at the club under Gracia, so a blend of his previous assistants in Aranalde and Solla, a new coach in Antia and a current Leeds figure in Skubala could be a good blend for the newly-appointed 52-year-old as he looks to steer the Whites away from the relegation zone.