Redfearn's first coach backs Leeds boss to tell Cellino straight

John McGovern is certain that Neil Redfearn will not be holding his tongue to owner Massimo Cellino.

Leeds United's first-team affairs are back under the control of Neil Redfearn this week after previous boss Darko Milanic was relieved of his duties at the weekend.

Leeds fans are in no doubt, they want Redfearn to stay. The youth team coach guided the team toward the play-offs during his previous caretaker spell, but since Milanic took over it has been back to relegation form from the club.

Redfearn has plenty of backers, including his former boss at Bolton Wanderers.

John McGovern, who had a brief spell as a Leeds United player in 1974-75, managed The Trotters as player-coach between 1982 and 1984.

During that time his club was ransacked by richer teams in and youngsters had to be used - one such youngster was a certain Neil Redfearn.

And McGovern is sure that Redfearn's qualities he had, even as a young player, will help him cope with the difficulties of the Leeds United job.

He told the Yorkshire Evening Post:

“Even as a young lad, he had a naturally strong character. I found out myself that managing a football club takes a lot of courage.

“There’s pressure from above – financial pressure and chairmen or owners who make life difficult – but it’s also your job to make hard decisions.

“Sometimes you’ve got tell people things they don’t want to hear or don’t like but to be fair to Neil, he wasn’t afraid of doing that when I had him at Bolton.

“There’s a knack to knowing your place and paying people due respect but I think it’s easier to cope in management if you’re prepared to fight your corner. Neil won’t be scared to fight his.

“How the owner (Cellino) reacts to that is obviously a different matter but there’s probably some mutual respect there.”

Time will tell if Redfearn can survive the reign of Cellino at Elland Road, as his first coach believes he can.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch