When Steve Evans took over from the sacked Uwe Rosler, a ripple of digust, distaste and anger seemed to well in many Leeds United fans. Even Leeds fans, who refer to themselves as ‘Vile Animals’, said that Evans was not suited to the Elland Road job; a case of the man being too vile for the vile.
Slowly, but surely, Evans began to win the fans round with his honesty and humility at being in charge at Elland Road. Fans started to ‘feel’ for him as the games wore on, the results came in dribs and drabs and the players seemed to begin to play – albeit at times.
It wasn’t all champagne and strawberries though, there were warm lager and pork scratching moments in between during Steve Evans’ reign at Eland Road. Excellent victories over Derby, Huddersfield and Hull City were countered with abject displays against Blackburn, Brighton and Huddersfield.
Still, Evans made it to the end of the season, and in doing so becoming the longest serving and most successful manager/head coach/watermelon during Massimo Cellino’s two-year reign at Leeds United. He won a large number of fans over, evidence of that could be seen in the reception that 5,000+ Whites fans gave him after the final whistle at the Preston game (see tweet – below), the last game of the last season.
This has really got to me.a powerful image of Leeds United.this man "gets it" being Leeds
— eddieleeds (@eddieleeds1) May 7, 2016
Speaking to Mark Willson from Radio Yorkshire, Evans gives a reflective look over his tenure at Leeds United – an opportunity he still feels humbled to have been offered. Speaking about the offering of the job Evans said, “I think anyone who ever gets the call to be the head coach/manager of Leeds United you literally put the phone down and start your car and you get in the car.”
He then went on the speak about the size of the club and the rewqards that a manager gets from being in charge of Leeds United, rewards that come along with the flip side of the coin – responsibilities and pressure. He talks about the pressure but denies that it comes from above, rained down by Massimo Cellino. Evans said: “Pressure is nae put on by Mr Cellino. You know what happens if you don’t win games, pressure puts on with yourself. You have to be winning games when your head coach or you manage this football club.”
Evans then goes on to say that the experience of managing Leeds United will forever stay with him and quotes the words of former Leeds United manager Howard Wilkinson. Speaking of what Leeds means to those who steer the Elland Road ship, Evans said: “You can take the man out of Leeds, but Leeds doesn’t come out of the man and that’s where I would be with Leeds. It’ll always, it’ll always be, I don’t think I’ll ever be fortunate enough to manage such an iconic and an insitution as this football club is.”