New Sheffield United manager: Former Leeds United coach Paul Heckingbottom confirmed after Slavisa Jokanovic sacking - Stuart McCall in as assistant

Sheffield United have confirmed former Leeds United coach Paul Heckingbottom is their new manager – on a permanent basis.

Thursday, 25th November 2021, 1:53 pm

The news was confirmed this morning after the departure of Slavisa Jokanovic after just 19 league games in charge.

Heckingbottom has signed a contract until the end of the 2025/26 season, starting his reign this weekend against Bristol City at Bramall Lane.

Former Blades midfielder Stuart McCall will return to Bramall Lane as Heckingbottom’s assistant, with Jack Lester becoming head of player development.

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United say “further announcements with regards to the structure of the football department will be made in due course.”

Blades chairman Yusuf Giansiracusa commented: “We look forward to embarking on a new era in Blades football with Paul at the helm.

"Paul possesses the personal leadership qualities and technical football skills the board feels are essential to successfully implement the board’s strategic directives. He shares our values and interest in player development while also possessing the ambition and determination to get the most out of our current squad.

Paul Heckingbottom has been confirmed as the new Sheffield United manager. Andrew Yates / Sportimage

"We are convinced that Paul will play a leading role in improving all aspects of football operations.”

Stephen Bettis, United’s chief executive, added: “Disappointingly, after a slow start, we have not seen an improvement in results, performances and we’d prefer to be in a better league position. A decision has been made and now it is important that we look forward.

"Paul’s style and ethos matches that of the club and we will support him where possible. We have enough league games remaining, we know we have the ability and resources within our playing squad to start picking up points and climbing the league table.”

Paul Heckingbottom acted as Sheffield United's interim manager last season: Darren Staples / Sportimage