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McDermott agent reveals details of Leeds fiasco

Updated: Tuesday, 04 Feb 2014 11:10 | Comments

Brian McDermott remains Leeds United's manager
Brian McDermott remains Leeds United's manager

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The agent of Leeds United manager Brian McDermott has shed more light on the farcical situation over the weekend in which he appeared to be sacked before being reinstated as manager.

Former League of Ireland manager and MNS panellist Pat Dolan is McDermott’s agent and in an interview on RTÉ 2FM’s Game On, he insisted that the manager just wants to get with his job after a weekend of high farce.

On Friday it appeared McDermott had been fired by prospective new owner Masimo Cellino, but Leeds’ current owners Gulf Finance House (GFH) Capital were forced to release a statement the following day to insist he remained in situ.

Cellino is understood to want to install friend Gianluca Festa, the former Middlesbrough and Watford defender, as the club's new head coach and Festa has been seen in and around the club for several weeks.

"(Brian) just wants to manage Leeds United Football Club and I think over the weekend there were unusual circumstances. It wasn’t ideal, but his focus was to prepare the team and on Friday he did that," Dolan revealed.

"Then the team was changed, but then (assistant) Nigel Gibbs, who took the team, changed it back and they got a fantastic result." 

Dolan did not reveal just who changed the team.

"I got a phone call from Brian and I had my weekend planned. I had a meeting that I had to be at that I cancelled because Brian rang me and said: ‘I’m sacked’.

"I got onto the M1, the weather conditions weren't very good on Friday evening and it took quite a while to get up there. Obviously my phone was hopping and so was his and it’s very difficult in those circumstances to know what you should do.

"As the evening unfolded, there did seem to be some confusion – different people were telling him different stories. I think he just made the decision to focus on the game, he wasn't sure whether he was going to be in the dugout.

"Eventually he took advice from the League Managers Association and they guided him as to what he should and shouldn’t do and the team won 5-1.

"That phonecall was made by a lawyer who has an association with Massimo Cellino."

"Other people can speculate about what the future holds. He’s just delighted to be back taking the training today. He just wants to get on, be left alone and do the best job he can," Dolan added.

However, that may not be possible and interference in team matters continues as reports claimed that at that morning training session was a new signing – one that McDermott did not know about in 23-year-old Andrea Tabanelli - who arrived at the club during McDermott's brief absence.

"That player turned up this morning with Gianluca Festa as they didn’t go to training. That signing is not ratified yet so that player wasn’t at training," Dolan revealed.

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