Heckingbottom ditches Barnsley to take charge of Leeds
Paul Heckingbottom has been appointed as Leeds United's new head coach just four days after penning a new contract as Barnsley manager.
The 40-year-old has agreed an 18-month deal at Elland Road and succeeds Thomas Christiansen, who departed on Sunday on the back of a 4-1 home loss to Cardiff City.
Leeds are seven points off the play-off places and lie 10th in the Championship, having taken two points from six games, while they were dumped out of the FA Cup by fourth-tier Newport County.
Heckingbottom led Barnsley to promotion from League One via the play-offs in 2015-16, also collecting the EFL Trophy, and secured a creditable 14th-place finish last season.
| Paul leads out the team for today’s training session... pic.twitter.com/wgy88B7UVP
— Leeds United (@LUFC) February 6, 2018
In a club statement, Barnsley described his decision to join their Yorkshire neighbours as "thoroughly disappointing".
"The club are shocked at Paul Heckingbottom's desire to leave, having agreed a new contract last week following the completion of the transfer window, where the directors worked tirelessly along with Paul to secure their targets, resulting in a successful window," the statement read.
"This left the club optimistic in a turnaround in form and a strong end to the 2017-18 campaign as we battle to retain our position in the league."
Heckingbottom's first game in charge will come when Leeds travel to face Sheffield United on Saturday.