Redfearn's former assistant Steve Thompson: 'Complex' Leeds could be top five club in Britain

Elland Road pitchside

Former Leeds assistant manager Steve Thompson says the club could be one of the best in Britain.

Newly-appointed Preston North End first team coach Steve Thompson has told BBC Radio Lancashire that former club Leeds can be a top five team in Britain.

Thompson, 50, was appointed Preston first team coach on Wednesday, reuniting with manager Simon Grayson after the duo not only played together for Leicester but also worked together at Blackpool.

Thompson's arrival at Deepdale is seen as a move to help the Lilywhites as they return to the Championship for the first time since relegation in 2011, with manager Grayson acting quickly to land him following his suspension at Leeds United.

Appointed as Neil Redfearn's assistant manager back in December 2014, Thompson aided Leeds' revival before the club controversially announced on their official website that Thompson had been suspended with immediate effect in April.

With his suspension up and Thompson free to move on, he has joined Preston - but told BBC Radio Lancashire upon his arrival that Leeds can become a top five club in Britain again, but added that the Elland Road club are 'complex' under the stewardship of chairman Massimo Cellino.

"It was a fantastic opportunity to work for what could be a top five club in Britain, there's no doubt with their support," said Thompson. "It was very complex, very different to what I was used to with the staff and the players, but it was great working with Redders."

"Our main objective was to keep them up in the Championship when they were two points off relegation, and we comfortably did that, we were third in the form league. We had everything going then, and then the suspension came and the wheels came off with five straight losses after it. The player were very disappointed with how I was treated, but you move on," he added.

Steps in the right direction

Leeds were in turmoil last season, but their summer activity so far suggests that there could be some stability in the near future.

Calculated signings such as Lee Erwin, Sol Bamba and Chris Wood have arrived, as has new manager Uwe Rosler, whilst the experienced Adam Pearson has also joined to assist Cellino.

Thompson's departure may have been a low point in Leeds' season, but it seems that the Whites are moving in the right direction - 11 years after their relegation from the Premier League.

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