Jesse Marsch sacked by Premier League strugglers Leeds

Leeds last won a match in the Premier League on November 5

February 07, 2023
Jesse  Marsch was hired on a three-year contract to replace the sacked Marcelo Bielsa — Reuters 

LONDON: Jesse Marsch was sacked as Leeds manager on Monday after the American failed to halt the struggling club's slide towards the Premier League relegation zone.

Leeds' 1-0 loss at Nottingham Forest on Sunday left them just one place above the bottom three after seven league games without a win.

"Leeds United can confirm head coach Jesse Marsch has been relieved of his duties," the club said in a statement.

Leeds last won a match in the Premier League on November 5, a dismal run that prompted fans to call for Marsch to be sacked after the Forest defeat.

They got their wish just 24 hours later, with the 49-year-old relieved of his duties after only a year in charge at Elland Road.

"Jesse joined the club in February 2022 and was instrumental in keeping the club in the Premier League on the final day of last season," the statement said.

It added: "The process of appointing a new head coach is under way."

Marsch, who was hired on a three-year contract to replace the sacked Marcelo Bielsa, departs with his 17th-placed side out of the relegation zone only on goal difference.

The appointment of Marsch at Elland Road was greeted with scepticism, with some arguing the American's lack of Premier League pedigree made his appointment a gamble.

He had previously managed New York Red Bulls, Red Bull Salzburg and RB Leipzig.

Leeds were 16th when Marsch arrived in February 2022 and he eventually saved them from relegation with victory at Brentford on the last day of the season.

But they have failed to progress after that dramatic escape, winning just four times in 20 Premier League games this season and suffering 10 defeats as fan frustration mounted.

Marsch was hampered by the sales of star players Kalvin Phillips and Raphinha before the start of the current campaign.

Bamford injury

He also had to deal with an injury to star striker Patrick Bamford and failed to solve his team's defensive weaknesses.

But Marsch was backed by Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani in the January transfer window, with Georginio Rutter, Weston McKennie, Diogo Monteiro and Max Woeber added to the squad.

The recent appointment of fellow American Chris Armas as Marsch's assistant coach was also seen as a show of support for the beleaguered boss.

Speaking after the Forest loss, Marsch said he took "full responsibility" for the club's plight.

But Leeds CEO Angus Kinnear and sporting director Victor Orta have acted by removing Marsch in a desperate bid to stop Leeds crashing into the Championship.

Former Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard, West Brom manager Carlos Corberan and ex-Tottenham coach Mauricio Pochettino have all been linked with the Leeds job.

Corberan was part of Bielsa's backroom staff at Elland Road and has impressed with his work at second-tier West Brom this season after taking Huddersfield to the Championship play-offs last term.

Leeds' decision to axe Marsch came at the start of a crucial week featuring back-to-back fixtures against arch-rivals Manchester United.

They travel to Old Trafford on Wednesday and host Erik ten Hag's team on Sunday.