By Mark Walker, PA
Head coach Jesse Marsch sees his future at Leeds “for many years” regardless of which division they will be playing in next season.
Marsch signed a contract tying him to Elland Road until June 2025 when he replaced Marcelo Bielsa in February and has four games left to preserve Leeds’ Premier League status.
Their survival fight resumes at Arsenal on Sunday and the 48-year-old American said the support he has been shown by the fans and wider community made him more determined to succeed.
Marsch said: “I’ve said it from day one that I love being here. I hope to make this my home for many years. And I love the club. I love the team. I love the area.
“We’re really enjoying ourselves and that gives me more and more motivation and desire to do whatever it takes to help this team achieve.”
Marsch, whose side’s 4-0 home defeat to Manchester City last week left them two points above third-bottom Everton, who have a game in hand, hopes to move into his permanent new home with his family within the next fortnight.
“I can only speak about the positivity that I’ve felt in this community, starting at Elland Road,” he said.
“The way our fans treated us after the match against Man City – I’ve never seen in football and it’s the positivity we need right now.
“We need to be so aligned and I can say that the singular focus here at Thorp Arch is that everybody is doing everything they can to make sure that we control our destiny.
“We need all the positivity from our fans like we saw at Elland Road and I have felt that in the community too, whether it’s having people that recognise me and come up and then support me and say how happy they are with the team and how excited they are for the future.
“And then there’s people that have no idea who I am, which I prefer more, and then we have a really nice exchange, whether it’s at a coffee shop where the friendliness and kindness is amazing.”
Leeds will be without Stuart Dallas at Arsenal after the Northern Ireland international broke his leg against City, but skipper Liam Cooper is fit having limped out of the warm-up for that match with a knee problem.
Everton kick off at the same time at Leicester on Sunday, while fellow relegation rivals Burnley will be bidding for a fourth straight win at home against Aston Villa on Saturday.
Marsch said he will not be keeping tabs on either of their results until the final game of the season.
“Not right now, I think there’s still too many games left,” he added.
“I think when you get down to the last two, you have to know a little bit what’s happening with the other results, specifically the last one if it’s tight, but right now the best thing we can do is pick up points.”