Chris Armas likely to leave Leeds United 'soon' with Javi Gracia's public dismissal - Phil Hay
Chris Armas is likely to leave Leeds United in the near future after Javi Gracia’s comments to the media, according to Phil Hay.
The Whites boss was asked about the status of the American coach in his Thursday (9 March) press conference ahead of the Premier League clash with Brighton on Saturday, and gave a blunt dismissal of his presence.
He said of Armas, as per The Athletic: “He’s not part of my staff. He’s not here. It’s something the club can maybe explain better.”
Armas arrived as Jesse Marsch’s confidant [The Athletic, 7 February] just two weeks before the former Elland Road boss was sacked, but was strangely kept on despite most of the backroom staff leaving at the same time.
He wasn’t mentioned at all in the club’s belated announcement of Gracia’s arrival and the resulting backroom reshuffle, and after the Spaniard’s public distancing Hay believes Armas will be gone before long, writing in The Athletic: “Gracia’s comments suggest his short spell in West Yorkshire will likely soon come to an end.”
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Unless the club had a specific plan in mind for Armas thanks to a particular skillset he provided that Gracia would benefit from then it was pointless to keep him kicking around for the past few weeks.
It has proven odd enough that he was hired in the first place if Marsch was on the brink of being sacked, and given his previous relationship with his compatriot it was obviously a targeted appointment.
Gracia has brought his own assistants and clearly has no interest in integrating what has essentially proven to be a club error into his team.
So there is sure to be a clarification from the club sooner rather than later that they are thanking him for his contributions and sending the 50-year-old on his way.
It can’t be especially enjoyable for Armas himself to have arrived into a situation that quickly changed multiple times, and for the manager to publicly intimate he isn’t interested in his help leaves him nowhere else to go at Elland Road.
It is less a statement about the former Red Bull man than it is about the obvious disarray behind the scenes at the club that has become all too apparent since the end of the January transfer window.
In other Leeds United news, that disarray now sees Victor Orta on borrowed time and surely likely to leave in the summer.
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