Redfearn hopes players’ backing will hold sway

Neil Redfearn.
Neil Redfearn.
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HEAD coach Neil Redfearn 
admits to having one eye on next season already after hoping he has done enough to earn a contract extension at Leeds United.

The 49-year-old has a deal that runs until the summer, but with an option on the club’s behalf which can see it extended.

Redfearn has done a terrific job, first in the role of caretaker manager in the autumn and then in the time since taking permanent charge ahead of winter.

His 23 games at the helm have yielded 35 points, a tally that, if extended over the full season, would have seen Leeds finish eighth last term and just two points adrift of the play-offs.

Asked about his future, Redfearn replied: “It is the club’s decision and it will be down to them. They will make a decision when the time is right.

“But I think I have done enough, if I am honest. I have got the backing of the players, they love what they are doing and they have got a clear sight of where they are going.

“People know we have done well. I spoke to Chris Hughton at Brighton (after United’s 2-0 defeat on Tuesday night) and he was very complimentary about the fact that we have got the club in a better position and got results the right way. We know what we are doing. It isn’t as if we don’t.”

United’s form since the turn of the year – Brighton was only their second loss in nine league outings – has raised hopes the club can make an impact on the promotion race next time around.

Redfearn added: “I don’t want to talk too much about next season because I don’t want to disrespect the fact that we have got a lot of games left.

“I don’t want to tempt fate or pre-empt anything, but you are always going to have one eye on it.

“I have got to start thinking that way. I have got to accept that I’m going to be here.

“We need to make sure we have got the right blend, the right system and the right way of playing so we can hit the ground running next season. Pre-season’s going to be important.

“We have done well, we have got a bit of momentum now and I want to keep that going.

“We have talked about players for next season, who we are going to keep, and we have been planning pre-season. But nothing official has been announced (about his future).”