Team News: Liam Cooper picked for the game went off during the pre game work out and was replaced by Pascal Struijk. Ayling took the captain’s armband. Rodrigo and Harrison came in for Roberts and Alioski. Wolves made one change with Moutinho replacing Nevez.
Wolves ended Leeds’ proud unbeaten home run that stood since the 1-0 defeat to Wigan Athletic thanks to a Jimenez shot that deflected off the head of Kalvin Phillips into the net.
Leeds started the game with purpose and forced Wolves on to the back foot from the first minute. Saying that the first opportunity went to the away side, Jimenez getting behind Struijk but his effort went across the goal and wide. Bamford then had two chances to give United the lead, first a shot went wide and a header actually went in but was correctly judged offside by the wonders of VAR.
Helder Costa who started the game well was challenged by the byline after some trickery by the winger but the referee didn’t buy the player’s dive in the area. Leeds continued attacking with first Rodrigo heading over and Costa narrowly wide when excellently set up by Bamford.
At the other end Wolves warmed Meslier’s gloves when Podence shot towards the goal in the last minutes of the first half. It would have been really rough justice on Leeds if they had gone into the break ahead. As for the home side it was a case of having the lion’s share of possession without really testing the Wolves keeper.
0-0 at the break.
Leeds started the second period with a determined effort to get the first goal but were rocked on their heels when Saiss finished excellently but fortunately for United the goal was wiped out by VAR for offside. This was Wolves best part of the game and Leeds struggled to keep the ball and were thankful for an excellent save by Meslier just before the hour mark.
Kalvin Phillips was booked for a rash challenge in midfield as the Leeds midfield struggled to keep the visitors midfield in check. Moutinio followed the England international for another ‘robust’ challenge in the midfield area. The opening goal came after 70 minutes, Struijk slipped chasing Jimenez and the striker made his way across the Leeds area before sidestepping a Leeds defender and sending a shot goalwards, unfortunately for United it was deflected past Meslier by Kalvin Phillips who was trying to head the ball wide. 1-0 Wolves.
It’s been a horrible year both personally and for the whole of West Yorkshire. 2020 will go down in history as a dark time in our history but sporting wise Leeds has celebrated two fantastic achievements.
On Saturday the Leeds Rhinos battled through eighty minutes against a determined Salford City Reds team at Wembley, it was a superb final and even though I have leanings towards another rugby league team I celebrated their win as if I was one of their ‘faithful’.
The game of rugby league has suffered since fans weren’t allowed to attend. They don’t have the big budget of their newly promoted football team but have a rich history of bringing through talented players through their youth ranks to their first team.
It is also the year when one of their own found out he has Motor Neurone Disease. Rob Burrows typifies the battling qualities of the sport and now with the help of his family, friends and ex teammates faces another ‘battle’ but ‘Beep, Beep’ will battle for the full eighty minutes and will never, ever give in.
Rob and his wonderful children.
Sport has brought the city of Leeds into the limelight, firstly Leeds United after sixteen years in the wilderness celebrated promotion to the Premier League and have done extremely well in their first four games winning two, losing to Champions Liverpool through a late, late penalty and gave Manchester City a right old second half battering in their 1-1 draw that kept them in the top six.
Champions of the Championship and back in the Premier League.
The one thing missing from both celebrations was the fans, the streets of Leeds would have bounced celebrating their favourite teams triumphs, alas we weren’t there and most celebrated in their homes because of this pandemic.
Well done United and Rhinos, in a year when smiles were hard to find they at least did their best to put one on the faces of their fans.
By Keith Ingham
The first permanent player who was in the squad that claimed the Championship trophy back in August has left the nest.
Douglas was a reciprocate of wonderful letter by Victor Orta as a way of thanking the left back for his time at Leeds United
The popular player has joined Championship Blackburn Rovers for the rest of the season on loan. His contract ends in the summer of 2021 so it looks like he will make his move permanent if he is successful during his loan spell.
When he arrived from Wolves most people, including their fans thought that Leeds had made the ‘steal’ of that transfer window by securing the top assist player of their promotion squad. Many went on social media to raise their concerns on letting such a good player leave.
Barry started in the early months of the 2018/19 season and I considered him as an excellent signing but unfortunately injuries have marred his time at Leeds but he will be fondly remembered by the fans of that great squad who lifted the trophy and who could ever forget, when carrying a bad knee injury he crossed for ‘Bill’ Ayling to equalise against Millwall at Elland Road.
Unfortunately after COVID interrupted the season, his appearances were limited but nobody could argue that his performance at Blackburn Rovers during that 3-1 win was one of his best in a Leeds shirt. He was my MOTM.
His joy at the celebrations after the Huddersfield victory over West Brom was clear for all to see and all must remember he has two Championship medals to look back on when eventually he retires, that may become three if Blackburn are successful during his time there.
We at weallloveleeds would like to put on record our thanks for his time at the club and his superb wardrobe!
All the best Bazza
By Keith Ingham
Leeds started their prelude to preseason with a manic Monday that saw signings, sponsorships and leaks all in one exciting the day.
The clubs first move was confirmation of the loan acquisition of Jack Harrison for an additional year.
The English born winger will now enter his third season with Leeds United; a club he has began to become very endeared too.
Leeds were said to be set to complete a permanent clause in his contract earlier in the year with a purchase fee rumoured to be around £8million. However with some astute business acumen the club have kept the permanent clause while taking the player for an additional years loan.
Harrison has made 91 appearances in all competitions for Leeds in his two year spell; contributing 12 goals and 10 assists. However; it is this promotion season in which Harrison has shone under Bielsa, becoming a more dynamic winger while adding 5 goals and 7 assists.
The next news was what mans fans had planned on for some time; an announcement on the kit. The club have been stalled by the decision to drop 32 Red and find a new suitor for their main shirt sponsor.
Yesterday the club announced that SBOBet will now take over as their main kit sponsor with the confirmation that the deal has become the clubs highest ever endorsement received; trumping ever the days of Champions League football.
The multi-year partnership with the betting firm should allow Leeds to now act more frugally in the market after additional finances are pumped into the club.
An announcement that Clipper will now become the clubs official training gear partner was also forthcoming.
Finally the club announced the signed of highly rated talent Joe Gelhardt from Wigan for a nominal fee rumoured to be £800k with additional incentives.
The 18-year old has been on the clubs radar for some time and the relegation of Wigan looks set to have been the catalyst to the deal being pushed ahead.
Likened to a young Wayne Rooney; this signing may not be like previously thought and Gelhardt may spend more time with the Whites first team rather than with the development squad.
Quick on his feet and the ability to come back to get the ball and make plays; Gelhardt boasts a powerful left foot and may be a promising addition to Leeds’ current front line ahead of their inaugural Premier League season.
Finally; from the announcement of Gelhardt came a leaked image of the new Leeds United home shirt. A very low-key design with a white base and blue trim.
With several other news set to drop we wouldn’t be surprised to see a Terrific Tuesday, Wonderful Wednesday or Time we freed Ben White Thursday coming up within the week.
By Ryan Ingham
After Leeds had demolished Charlton Athletic 4-0 to send the Londoners to Division One. The ‘real’ celebrations started, one by one Bielsa’s boys came back into the pitch to be met by the sound of ‘Marching on Together’ playing through the public announcement system.
For 16 years Leeds’ fans had waited for the ‘monkey on their back’ to be removed and when Liam Cooper picked up the trophy Billy Bremner and Gordon Strachan had previously held aloft, the cheers of hundreds of thousands of fans could be heard around England, Europe, USA and Australia.
The joy at seeing Marcelo Bielsa. after being prompted by first Patrick Patrick Bamford then Kalvin Phillips he walked nervously toward his players and held the ‘prize’ of two season’s hard graft aloft. It was like seeing a grandfather holding one of his grandchildren with a very proud look on his face.
The players deserve the plaudits for turning last May’s tears of failure into smiles of champions. This squad is up there with Wilko’s 89/90 promotion and Division One title winners, O’Leary’s ‘babies’ who stormed through Europe to reach the Champions League semi final.
We wait excitedly to see what the future brings, the one thing I look forward to is stepping back into Elland Road to see my team play. I’ve missed the old ground so much in this crazy period the world finds itself in.
We remember Norman, Trevor, Jack and others who have passed in the time we’ve been away from the top table of English football. I’m sure each and every one will be cheering from above when Leeds step out for their first game in the Premier League in September.
This season has left us with unbelievable memories and the future, under Andrea and Marcelo looks bright and looks Leeds!
By Keith Ingham
New walkway in the Trinity Centre Leeds.
A message from Angus: “Today Leeds United will officially be crowed champions of the Football League. This is a momentous occasion and one that we’ve dreamt of for 16 long years.
But we must consider the health of people in our community before we celebrate- the fight against Covid-19 is not over yet.
We appreciate the support of fans, as always, and it is heart-breaking that we can’t encourage the kind of scenes we all know we should seeing be under different circumstances.
However, people must consider the negative impact coming out could have on others. The trophy lift will be live on our social channels and Sky Sports News for fans to see and I promise that when the time is right, we will celebrate in style. For now, support Leeds, stay at home.”
A superb article by BBC Radio Leeds commentator Adam Pope on how Marcelo Bielsa turned Leeds into Champions.
Thank you Mr Pope. Fascinating.
Leeds v Charlton Athletic
Team: Meslier, Ayling, White, Cooper(c), Dallas,Struijk, Klich, Harrison, Alioski, Hernandez, Bamford.
Leeds United 4 Charlton Athletic 0: Ben White nets scorcher as champions produce fireworks in season finale | Yorkshire Evening Post
Thanks to the YEP.
Leeds United could be set to challenge some of Europe’s biggest hitters for the chance to sign Argentina’s next biggest star.
The newly promoted side are said to interested in Velez star Thiago Almada.
Now 19-years old and linked with several opportunities to enter the European leagues; Almada could see an opportunity in the Premier League with El Loco as an enticing proposal, something he has eluded to himself.
“I would like Bielsa to direct me,” the 19-year-old told Superfutbol. “My friends sent me that something came out about Bielsa, but I am calm. If it happens or not we wait and see.”
Known as a number 10 who has bags of pace and the ability to beat his man, the Velez youngster is also known for his fierce attitude; something that could be welcomed by a Bielsa who has allowed for his second season Leeds to become more combative.
Previously managed by former European football alumni Gabriel Heinze and now Mauricio Pocchetino, it would surely only work in Leeds’ favour that his coaches have experienced Premier League football.
Standing at 5’7 with a diminutive ability on the ball; Almada could become heir apparent to Leeds’ mercurial magician Pablo Hernandez as Bielsa targets reinforcements throughout the starting XI.
With an asking price quoted to be around £16million, it won’t price out Leeds when it comes to acquisitions but will be a hefty upfront fee if they were to chase a deal.
By Ryan Ingham
Leeds are going up!
After Huddersfield Town surprisingly beat West Brom 2-1 at The John Smith’s Stadium with a late goal from Smith-Rowe. The goal was timed at exactly 19:19pm!
Leeds cannot be mathematically caught for one of the top two promotion places. Let the party begin.
The win promoted wild scenes at Elland Road and all around the world. Thousands gathered outside as the players celebrated inside.
They then celebrated with the gathered supporters. The party went on for a few hours until the police cleared the area around 1.00am.
An emotional Nicolie Costou-Walder was once again a superstar in front of the camera as he thanked Marcelo Bielsa on promotion to the Premier League.
With Ryan the morning after promotion. The area around Elland Road was cleared of rubbish by volunteers early in the morning. Fantastic 👏🏻
With one result already in our favour player’s and fans knew that only a win by Brentford could stop Leeds being promoted as Champions of the Championship.
Incredibly Stoke City beat them 1-0 with a first half Lee Gregory sending thousands of United fans into celebrations around Billy Bremner’s statue. I swear I saw the great man smile grow wilder as the fans around jumped for joy.
The celebrations went on long into the night and carried on till the morning. The amazing scenes are something I’ll never forget and social distancing was forgotten for at least a day.
Derby County v Leeds
Team News: Marcelo Bielsa makes seven changes. Kiko Casilla plays his first game since his suspension.
Team: Casilla, Dallas, White, Berardi, Douglas, Strujk, Shackleton, Hernandez(c), Poveda, Alioski, Bamford.
David Watkins blog on the 3-1 victory and now he has a title for his forthcoming new book.
Derby County Away Jul 2020 | leedsunited
Thank you David and I can imagine the malt took a battering over the weekend. Cheers! Champions !
MOTM: Pablo Hernandez, sometimes you run out of words to describe such a gifted player.
Derby's Phillip Cocu: "I think the difference between the teams is that they are always on the front foot and anticipate. If they do something, they do it at 100 per cent and we were more reactive today.
"We know we have a lot of work ahead of us towards next season to make sure - depending on the possibilities, of course, financially at the club - we get some new fresh blood and quality in to support the senior players, but also the youngsters."
Marcelo Bielsa: "I'm happy with the match. Three young players were at a good level and the rest of the players were at a good level as well. It was just sad for us that we couldn't share this with the supporters.
"This is a group that overcame everything that happened over a long season. It is fair to say the promotion belongs to them."
Celebrations continued in Leeds Millennium square as around ten thousand gathered to salute their heroes.
WE BLOODY DID IT BOYS AND GIRLS!
By Keith Ingham