By Saikat Mandal

21st Feb, 2023 | 12:10pm

Javi Gracia set to become new Leeds United manager as white smoke starts to drift around LS11

Javi Gracia is set to become the new permanent manager of Leeds United as “white smoke starts to drift around LS11”, according to Yorkshire Evening Post.

After failing to lure their top targets this month, Leeds have finally decided to appoint Gracia who has been out of work since leaving Al Saad in Qatar last June.

According to a report from The Athletic, the Spaniard will come in initially until the end of the season where his primary task will be to prevent the club from getting relegated.

“As white smoke starts to drift around LS11, here’s what Javi Gracia has had to say previously,” wrote Yorkshire Evening Post on Twitter.

Gracia has since arrived at Elland Road with his agreement expected and the official announcement to follow.

Smart appointment

Subscribe to Football Insider TV now

The Whites have been looking to bring in a new manager after parting ways with Jesse Marsch earlier this month. 

They have made approaches to bring in the likes of West Brom’s Carlos Corberan, Rayo Vallecano’s Andoni Iraola, or Feyenoord’s Arne Slot, but they were unsuccessful in their attempts. 

The club decided that Michael Skubala would remain in interim charge for the time being, but after a 1-0 defeat by Everton last Saturday, the club felt the need to appoint a permanent manager. 

It looks like Gracia will be in the dug-out against Southampton in a crunch clash. 

Gracia previously managed Watford in 2018 and 2019, and took the club to the final of the FA Cup in 2019, where they were beaten by Manchester City. 

He also managed Valencia after leaving Watford. Having kept Watford for two seasons in the Premier League on the bounce, he knows what it takes to keep Leeds safe in the Premier League. 

It looks like the deal is very close, and he will be announced as the next manager shortly unless there’s a last-minute drama. 

In other Leeds United news, click here to see breaking, around-the-clock updates on Leeds’ search for a new manager in our interactive live blog.

Be sure to follow MOT Leeds News on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date with all the latest, breaking news from Elland Road.