Leeds United: Rosler concentrates on “short-term targets” as new season arrives

Uwe Rosler with assistant Rob Kelly
Uwe Rosler with assistant Rob Kelly
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Uwe Rosler says he is starting the new season with short-term targets in mind amid mounting optimism at Leeds United.

The club’s head coach insisted he was concentrating on ensuring “improvement from last year to this year” after Leeds set themselves up for the first game of the Championship term with a convincing defeat of a young Everton side on Saturday.

United produced a 2-0 win at Elland Road in their final pre-season friendly but Rosler called for sensible expectation this season as Leeds attempt to move forward from back-to-back 15th-placed finishes.

His squad face a difficult first month in which they will play up to seven competitive matches, including away games at Reading, Bristol City and Derby County and a League Cup tie at Doncaster Rovers.

Talking ahead of Saturday’s Championship opener against Burnley, Rosler said: “We need to see improvement. That’s what the chairman (Massimo Cellino) told me – improvement with the team and individuals from last year to this year.

“My focus now is to prepare my team for Burnley, then Doncaster and then Reading. We need short-term targets. All medium and long-term targets go out of the window when you’re not winning enough games. That’s the way I handle my job.

“I’m already switched on to Burnley. Pre-season is done. Burnley will be a different challenge with different questions to be answered.”

Rosler deliberately arranged a challenging end to United’s summer, organising meetings with Bundesliga sides Eintracht Frankfurt and Hoffenheim before the clash with Everton.

Rosler said: “It’s important now that we manage expectations.

“We can’t lose feet off the ground when we win against Everton, just as we can’t be too influenced when we’re not winning against teams who were eighth and ninth in the Bundesliga.

“We’ve improved but there will be times when the improvement is challenged. Then we have to come through on a positive note.”