By George Overhill

7th Feb, 2023 | 7:10am

Leeds United have already offered the vacant managerial role to Real Madrid legend Raul after sacking Jesse Marsch, AS report.

The American was sacked on Monday (6 February) after a run of zero Premier League wins since before the World Cup (5 November), with Carlos Corberan widely named as the top candidate to replace him.

But it appears the first port of call was the Castilla boss who the Whites had “wanted at all costs to hand over the project” to according to the Monday night report from the Spanish publication.

However, AS report that the former Spain and Real striker had turned down the offer in the “last hours”, rejecting the chance as the timing is wrong.

The 45-year-old is currently in the middle of a promotion battle in the Primera Federación with the Real reserve side and doesn’t want to leave the club he loves at the wrong time.

The three-times Champions League winner made 741 appearances for Los Blancos, and harbours ambitions to be first-team manager of the side for which he scored 323 goals, amid rival interest from German sides Schalke and Eintracht Frankfurt.

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Door shut

The Spanish coach has yet to coach a team in senior football, or for that matter outside the confines of the club where he is a legend.

So it would have been a bold move to hand the keys to the Leeds United rescue job to him, when there is not yet a body of work with which to judge him at senior level or outside of Madrid.

Clearly he is considered talented if German, Spanish and now English teams are all looking at bringing him in, but it appears they are all going to have to wait.

Given the turnover of managers at the Santiago Bernabeu the former striker may be just waiting nearby for his turn to assume the top job, looking to emulate his ex-teammate Zinedine Zidane.

So Victor Orta and United are going to have to look elsewhere to find the right manager to get this increasingly expensive squad playing closer to their full potential.

Marsch was always positive that things were moving in the right direction, but sitting outside the relegation zone only by dint of goal difference was never going to be enough.

The new manager will need to match the American’s success in keeping the club in the Premier League on the final day last season as an absolute bare minimum, and really should be looking to move away from a battle against the drop long before that, but Raul is not apparently not going to be that man.

In other Leeds United news, a club is already looking for replacements as the Whites aim for their priority candidate.