By Keith Ingham
The appointment of David Hockaday as Leeds United's first team coach has risen more eyebrows than any appointment I can remember. The fifty seven year old former Forest Green Rovers manager was the surprise choice of 'President' Massimo Cellino, who since attaining the club has been plugging the holes in the good ship Leeds.
Let me say first and foremost I'm all for giving a man a chance but I'm afraid the credentials of Mr Hockaday leave a lot to be desired. He mainly played his football in the lower leagues and after his playing career finished he moved into coaching and was part of Aidy Boothroyd's back room staff that ended Leeds' playoff hopes in the that forgettable final in Cardiff in 2006. He moved to MK Dons then followed Martin Allen to Leicester. In 2007 he joined Southampton as a youth coach and in 2009 rejoined Martin Allen at Cheltenham Town.
His first managerial appointment was in September 2009 when he guided the non league side to the FA Cup third round for the first time. That season his team was relegated but then reinstated following the relegation of Salisbury City. He was not the most successful manager and in October 2013 after a run of eight defeats in nine games he was sacked and has been unemployed every since.
Massimo in a slightly madcap press conference, in which he struggled to open a bottle of water stated that sometimes 'you need to open a watermelon to see what it's like' and other slightly bazaar comments. It seems that Hockaday will 'work his socks off' to prove Massimo correct but his comment that that he 'will earn respect but the fans will have to earn his respect too' went down badly with most fans and a poll has already said that over ninety percent of Leeds fans were against the appointment of Hockaday.
Time will tell if Massimo is correct in appointing a football 'nobody' and expectations of the fans have certainly not been raised by recent events. If more 'quality' players are brought in and more importantly Ross McCormack is kept maybe the fans will warm to the slightly over confident man from Sedgefield. Myself I'm not convinced and expect a early annulment of this agreement but I've been wrong before.
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