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Darko Milanic 'on paid leave' from Leeds


Leeds United sacked Coach Darko Milanic after just 32 days in charge at Elland Road

Leeds United sacked Coach Darko Milanic after just 32 days in charge at Elland Road

Leeds United sacked Coach Darko Milanic after just 32 days in charge at Elland Road

Darko Milanic may have left Leeds after just 32 days in charge but says he will be paid by the Championship club through to 2016 and as such is available to the club should they want him back.

The Slovenian became trigger-happy owner Massimo Cellino's latest victim an hour after Saturday's 2-1 home defeat to Wolves - his sixth game in charge and sixth without a win.

Leeds are now to replace the 46-year-old with Neil Redfearn, the perennial caretaker who accrued 10 points from 12 in the gap between Milanic (right) and David Hockaday.

Redfearn watched the Wolves game with Cellino and is set to finalise a contract this week, while Milanic will begin to contemplate rebuilding a career that only five weeks ago was being spent with Austrian side Sturm Graz - a club where he is adored after a successful spell as a player.

He says he can do so knowing Leeds are still paying him, though, and was quoted as telling Radio Slovenia: "I still have a contract on paid leave.

"During this time, I must be ready to take over the team if requested by the owner."

That technically opens the door for a return to Elland Road before the expiry of his contract in two years' time - something not unheard of in Italy, where Cellino spent 22 years with Cagliari, going through 36 coaches in the process.

Any return looks unlikely, however, with Cellino - who appointed Milanic saying "he's good looking" - admitting he had made a mistake.

Three points from 18 and accusations of a negative approach did for Milanic, who saw off the presence of Redfearn to get the job in the first place.

He insists, though, that he does not regret making the move, having bought out his contract with Graz in order to head to England.

"In six games with the team I made a big step forward," he said.

"It is true that we had bad results, but the day before the game we had praise from all sides on how the situation was improving.

"I do not believe I made a mistake in joining Leeds. I just wish that someone would believe in me.

"Cellino said I'm a loser? He should look at my CV."

While persuading Redfearn to sign up to coach his boyhood side on a full-time basis may not be Cellino's hardest sell, some grey areas remain.

When Redfearn was overlooked for Milanic a desire for Redfearn to continue his work at the head of the club's academy was cited, so a replacement will need to be sourced.

Likewise the summer sackings of Leigh Bromby, Benito Carbone and Richard Naylor mean Redfearn has no obvious in-house assistant.