Leeds United head coach Jesse Marsch's warm words for MK Dons target Mark Jackson

JESSE MARSCH has praised the character and influence of Leeds United first-team coach Mark Jackson - and admits that he is not surprised to see his name linked with vacant managerial roles.

Jackson, 45, an ex-Leeds player, is said to be in advanced talks with League One outfit MK Dons, with some reports suggesting he has been offered the position.

The Dons recently parted company with Liam Manning.

Marsch said: "All I can talk about right now is that Jacko has been an absolute asset for me from the first day that I stepped into the building.

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"He has done everything and more that I could have hoped. His passion, commitment and love of this club made him essential for me and us in our quest to stay in the league.

"I fully believe that without him that we wouldn't have stayed in the league (last season). He helped me understand the culture of the club, fans, what we are building here and the player pool and what he thinks we need to do in the future.

"I can only say I value him completely as a person and football mind and I can see why there's interest in him as I think he has a big future."

While Jackson could be set for pastures new, one of United's senior first-teamers in Mateusz Klich is continuing to be strongly linked with a move to MLS outfit DC United.

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On Klich, whose deal runs until June 2024, Marsch said: "There have been enquiries for Mateusz. But I think from all sides, we're still cautious about thinking that it might be time for him to leave. I think he's still really important here."I think that (his exit) is not necessarily set in stone."