Thursday 27 October 2016

Sporting director Salerno and Leeds part company

Massimo Cellino
Massimo Cellino

Leeds sporting director Nicola Salerno has officially left the club after his contract was terminated by mutual consent.

Confirming the news, the club tweeted: "Nicola Salerno has departed his role as Sporting Director at #lufc after a mutual termination of his contract was reached.

"We would like to thank Nicola for his efforts over the last year and he will always be welcomed back to Elland Road in the future."

Back in April, club owner Massimo Cellino - who was at the time banned - claimed that Salerno had resigned following speculation about his position in the wake of the suspension of former United assistant head coach Steve Thompson.

Thompson had been suspended until the end of the season over an "internal issue" and told that his contract would not be renewed when it expired in the summer.

Salerno arrived at Leeds last July on a two-year contract when Cellino revealed the pair would be reunited at Elland Road having worked together at Cagliari.

Thompson's shock suspension, four months after arriving at Leeds from Huddersfield, followed a spell of six wins from 10 matches, which had helped lift Leeds clear of relegation trouble. It is understood the letter confirming Thompson's suspension had been signed by Salerno. Cellino has claimed he had "been told that Salerno was disrespected by Thompson" after Leeds' 3-0 win over Fulham on March 18. Although sources close to Thompson denied that there was any fall-out between the pair at Craven Cottage.

The 58-year-old Italian Salerno played a key role in the arrival of 15 players, many from overseas, at Elland Road last summer, persuading Sol Bamba to join United on a permanent basis.

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