9:00am Monday 2nd June 2014
By Chris Flanagan
GARY Bowyer is one of the bookmakers’ favourites for the vacant manager’s position at Leeds United – but Simon Garner believes he has a better job at Blackburn Rovers.
Leeds are searching for a new boss after Brian McDermott’s exit late on Friday night and Bowyer rose in the odds lists yesterday after reports suggested the Yorkshire club were admirers of the Rovers manager.
Bowyer has been a manager for little over a year but has steadied the ship at Ewood Park – a job that now needs to be done at Leeds after a turbulent season at Elland Road.
Rovers officials were unavailable for comment yesterday but sources in West Yorkshire believe that Leeds’ new Italian owner Massimo Cellino wants to speak to as many as 10 potential candidates before choosing a new manager.
Fellow Italians Gianluca Festa, Benito Carbone and Gianfranco Zola are all among the favourites for the job - with ex-Forest Green boss Dave Hockaday also a surprise candidate.
Rovers would be unlikely to welcome any interest from Leeds and Bowyer, who signed a 12-month rolling contract when he was appointed as boss on a permanent basis last summer, has always said he is happy with the position he holds at Ewood Park.
In any case, Garner thinks Leeds would be a step backwards for a manager who guided Rovers through chaos a year ago to eighth in the Championship table during the 2013/14 season.
“He’s sorted everything out at Blackburn and he must be pretty happy with his squad and will want to see how far they can go next season,” said the Rovers legend.
“Leeds are in turmoil and it would take him 12 months to sort everything out.
“It would be going back to the start, he would have to do it all again.
“With the job he has done at Rovers, clubs will be taking notice. But hopefully nothing comes of this.
“I think he will want to see what he can do next year with Rovers, and hopefully take the club into the play-offs.”
Bowyer has been looking to strengthen his Rovers squad ahead of next season and the club have been linked with Leeds’ Lee Peltier, who can play at right back or in midfield, as well as their former central defender Zurab Khizanishvili.
The 32-year-old Georgian, who played for Rovers between 2006 and 2011, is out of contract at Kayserispor but has been offered a new deal by the Turkish club.
Brentford are continuing to press ahead with their attempts to sign Rovers midfielder Alan Judge, with the London club growing more hopeful of striking a deal.
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