I won't be running Leeds United next season: Evans listens to his gut

Emotional Leeds manager Steve Evans knows the ball is now in owner Massimo Cellino's court regarding his future but his gut feeling is he will not be in charge at Elland Road next season.

An emotional Steve Evans at full time.

Leeds concluded their campaign with a 1-1 draw as Jordan Hugill’s stoppage-time equaliser for Preston cancelled out Chris Wood’s earlier penalty.

The focus now turns to Cellino and whether he opts to change managers yet again.

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Evans said: “I had tears in my eyes because the supporters were fantastic.

United's boss Steve Evans.

“I thought I knew my future but I don’t. It’s just the feeling you get.

“I hope it’s not the end, I really hope it’s not. But if the decision is made for the benefit of the football club then I will endorse it. If they’ve got (Jose) Mourinho parked in the corner then I’d be the first to applaud him onto the pitch.

“I’m going to go home and wait to see what the president decides. I would’ve loved to have been in on Monday planning pre-season and maybe that will still happen, but who knows?

“If the decision is against me it will break my heart. It’s all based on gut feeling. If you’d asked me last week I would have said 100 per cent I’d still be here.

United's boss Steve Evans.

“There’s been lots of meetings. I hope being a bit pessimistic is wrong but sometimes your head has to rule your heart.

“I’m good enough to take this club to promotion. The players, on the whole, are good enough too.”

With both sides safely in mid-table, the match was inevitably a low-key affair with few chances in the first half.

The breakthrough came on 78 minutes when Preston keeper Chris Kirkland brought down Luke Murphy and Wood dispatched the penalty.

Sol Bamba then cleared Paul Gallagher’s effort off the line while Adam Reach had a goal ruled out for offside before Preston equalised through Hugill.

Preston manager Simon Grayson said: “I think we deserved at least a point. We played well, the performance epitomised what we are this season, Leeds didn’t really look like scoring.

“We showed that character again to get the late goal. A lot of teams would have accepted that they’re going to lose the last game of the season 1-0 but not my players.

“I think we always said the first port of call was to stay up. I think if anyone had said we’d finish in the top half at the start of the season, lots would have said ‘who are you kidding?’ but ultimately we can be really chuffed with what we’ve done.

“We know our strengths and we know our weaknesses but to finish where we have, above lots of more experienced teams, speaks volumes for the players.”

Preston: Kirkland, Vermijl, Huntington, Wright, Woods, Browne, Johnson, Gallagher, Reach, Beckford, Garner. Subs: Pearson, Humphrey, Doyle, Welsh, Hugill, Robinson, Hudson.

Leeds: Silvestri, Coyle, Bamba, Cooper, Taylor, Diagouraga, Murphy, Dallas, Cook, Mowatt, Wood. Subs: Wootton, Antenucci, Doukara, Botaka, Phillips, Peacock-Farrell, Vieira.

Referee: Brendan Malone (Wiltshire)

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