Leeds United could be in search of a new manager again in the summer, regardless of which league they find themselves in, and survival could see a fresh approach for Andoni Iraola, with West Ham also said to be keen.
Leeds’ decision to sack Jesse Marsch in February kick-started a long managerial hunt, which culminated in Javi Gracia’s appointment until the end of the season, on what has been described as a “flexible” contract.
He was not the first choice option for the Whites, who had other targets in mind such as Arne Slot of Feyenoord and Iraola of Rayo Vallecano, as per The Athletic.
The Spaniard was approach by Leeds, before those advances were quickly rebuffed by Rayo, but discussion around Iraola has resurfaced once more.
Here, we look at all the latest that we know about any revived pursuit for Iraola and the potential interest from other parties, too…
Could Iraola be available in the summer?
Iraola will be available in the summer, according to Cadena Ser, who report that Iraola is not expected to extend his contract with Rayo Vallecano, meaning he will be a free agent come June.
He was thought to have a release clause in January, according to Leeds All Over sources, but is now available to negotiate without that potential stumbling block.
Quiz: How well do you know Leeds United head coach Javi Gracia? Find out here…
Who else is interested? Could West Ham get Iraola?
Leeds face competition in their bid to bring in Iraola, with Spanish outlet Cadena SER (via Grada 3) claiming that other Premier League interest in the 40-year-old has since emerged ahead of the summer.
It comes in the form of West Ham, who appear to be weighing up whether to part ways with their current manager David Moyes. The 60-year-old has been in charge since 2019 and is out of contract in 2024.
Sevilla are also named within the report as a team in the pursuit of Iraola, who will depart for a fresh opportunity one way or another in the summer.
Is an agreement likely?
There is a lot which remains up in the air for Leeds heading into the summer window, with a potential takeover pending and the club’s top flight status still in the balance.
It perhaps tips the scales in the direction of West Ham, should they sack Moyes in favour of Iraola. The Hammers are almost safe and there is much more clarity surrounding the club at the present moment.
However, there is still a chance for Leeds, if they remain in the Premier League, with Iraola all but certain to leave the La Liga outfit in search of a fresh challenge. Perhaps the club’s longer standing interest in the Spaniard will have an impact as well.
It will also depend on the future of current Leeds manager Javi Gracia, too.