Garry Monk is back in work again. The former Swansea City, Leeds United and Middlesbrough manager has taken over from Steve Cotterill at Birmingham City, after his sacking at the weekend.
Monk has also taken long-term working partners Pep Clotet and James Beattie with him to St Andrews as they aim to stay in the Championship.
For Leeds United fans there must be a fear this could see one of their favourite stars depart.
Pablo Hernandez was undoubtedly Monk’s signing at Leeds. He has worked with the Spanish international at Swansea. When Hernandez arrived from Qatari side Al Arabi it was a shock, but clearly Monk had a huge role to play in the recruitment.
The playmaker has since gone on to establish himself as a firm fan favourite at Leeds United.
Fans at Elland Road love his enigmatic and cultured style of play. However, his advancing years mean long-term contracts are not on offer for the player. Hernandez is in fact the only member of the Leeds United first-team whose current deal expires in the summer.
Leeds fans are already concerned that the club’s new hierarchy may decide to move on from Hernandez, given that he turns 33-years-old next month.
Birmingham City would therefore be primed to swoop. Monk and Clotet know Hernandez well and the player is enjoying his football in England.
In an ideal world, Hernandez has already made it clear that he would like a Leeds United stay. It is looking increasingly likely that the veteran may need to look elsewhere. Birmingham, who currently occupy the final Championship relegation slot, would need to ensure their second-tier safety first.
Doing so would ensure Monk’s position at St Andrew’s and if Hernandez is still waiting for a contract at Elland Road it would make perfect sense for Birmingham to come calling.
Leeds fans want to see Hernandez remain and, with Monk out of work that always seemed more likely. Now the Spaniard’s long-term colleague is back in a Championship hotseat Leeds fans must be fearful the writing is increasingly being added to the wall.
As for Birmingham, right now fans of the Blues will just hope Monk can keep them in the Championship. If Hernandez is a reward of that fact come the summer, they will hope it turns out to Leeds’ detriment.