By Keith Ingham
I've always been interested that some managers see something in a player while others don't. The case of Steve Morison being the most recent Leeds United have acquired.
Neil Warnock stated publicly that he thought Leeds got the best deal when the Morison - Becchio deal was done and in the past against us he certainly gave our centre backs food for thought with his rumbustious style of play, but when he turned out in the white shirt he seemed lazy and uninterested in playing for us.
His leaving seemingly frees up monies (Moribobs was on around 17k) to bring in a player in the next week or so and rumours abound that it is Noel Hunt, Brian McDermott is definitely a fan of him as he had him at Reading.
Another who Warnock rated but never played was Ryan Hall who seems destined
for pastures new if rumours are true. In fact out of all of the signings Colin made only El Hadji Diouf and Stephen Warnock in my view seemed worth the wages they were getting. For me a pretty poor record for a manager who had so much experience with getting players with other clubs.
I doubt if Morison is the last out of the door at Elland Road.
On On On
By K.G. Bailey
It has been a busy few dramatic days for Leeds United, or so Twitter would have you believe. The panic and complaining has been blown way out of proportion. The LUFC hashtag is like an exaggerated episode of Loose Women..only its
grown men doing the whining!
Yesterday saw Steve Morison leave to go on loan to Millwall for the season. Neil Warnock's January buy whom he said would be a "Club Legend" is deemed surplus to requirements by Brian McDermott just 5 months later. Neil was right though when he said Leeds fans would look back & remember he signed him.
I did think with his confidence back and a pre season under his belt that Morison would probably be a hit this season. His finishes against Crystal Palace aren't finishes by a bad player. His finishing against Sheffield Wednesday however were finishes by a player carrying an injury and low on confidence. Maybe location wise he wasn't happy up North, believe me when I say the differences between Northern & Southern life is very different & that may have been a factor in his performances.
Regarding Morison, I found it funny some people who were saying he was awful last year were complaining he was being allowed to leave? To quote a phrase that applies to some - Moaning on Together..
GFH have been criticized by some for the Morison transfer saga but how is this the board's fault? In January want away Luciano Becchio wanted out so GFH backed the then manager Neil Warnock in bringing £17k p/w Steve Morison + receiving a cash figure for Becchio. Backing the manager.
Now, Brian McDermott obviously doesn't fancy Morison so they've allowed him to loan him out to free up wage space to bring in someone the current manager wants. Backing the manager.
Where's the problem?
There would be something to complain about if they said to Brian "No he cant go, this transfer has to work so make it work." They haven't said this, they've allowed Brian to do the business he needs to do. No they haven't thrown millions at Brian, but allowing Brian to manage the squad the best way he can is backing the manager in my book.
SPEND SPEND SPEND - a majority of fans bellow.
But why? What is the guarantee that spending £3 million on one player is the route to success? It hasn't worked for Leicester City yet and last season we beat them at home and almost (should have) beat them away. The spend spend spend mantra is what eventually got us the League One Tour when we had to lose genuine class like Lee Bowyer, Harry Kewell & Rio Ferdinand to replace them with the likes of Michael Ricketts.
What we have now is no crisis compared to those days, I think some of our fans forget how dark those days were or maybe some aren't old enough to remember them but, compare now to then and we're pretty healthy.
I understand improvements are needed in the squad and at this point in time we are having to shift a player to bring one in which I don't see as a major problem, its better that Brian brings in the players he believes will improve the squad than keep deadwood taking up valuable space on the wage bill.
Our youngsters are worth a look at too, Chris Dawson, Si Lenighan & Dom Poleon I believe should be in and around the first team next season and slowly behind them Alex Mowatt & Lewis Walters.
There can be no harm in trying them out, look at Crystal Palace with Zaha and Bolasie. Blackpool with Tom Ince. Young players play with no fear and if they've come through the academy they will be 100% committed to the cause. It can only be a good thing in addition to what Brian brings in from the transfer market whether it be on the very good free agency or if he unearths another unknown gem as he previously has done at Reading.
Last season was bad but I saw when Brian McDermott came in the performances improved, it didn't mask we need changes. In the end in the league we weren't that far away from the play offs considering how poor some of our performances were during the season.
You have to believe with Brian's additions + our better youth players & a now fully rested Rudy Austin, a Ross McCormack with his shooting boots back, an energetic Dom Poleon causing havoc as he did vs Nottingham Forest at home and Watford away & players that know if they don't perform well they wont be automatically selected as they were under Warnock that - we might just be OK.
The summer isn't over and I'm interested to see how it unfolds.
Marching on Together
By Steve Barras
I have always wished for a more competitive edge to pre-season games. Last season I went to watch Leeds against Burton Albion away and to be honest the best thing about that game was the Leeds fans singing ‘We can’t see a thing, we’re Leeds United and we can’t see a thing’ when the sun was beaming directly onto us from above the opposite stand, Luke Varney’s fumbled goal was at the time below average but after his start to last season, a fumbled goal would have been welcome in the ensuing games.
At the Sheffield Wednesday game this season at Elland Road, the game when the
aforementioned Varney bagged two headers to win us the game, I was stood during the game listening to the torrents of abuse aimed both at us and the Owl contingency and thinking if only we could have games like this on a more regular basis. This led to me wondering what a Yorkshire League would be like, imagine every Saturday playing against bitter Yorkshire rivals to see who was or in fact is the best team in god’s own county.
I approached Andy Gregory (Editor) a few months ago about the idea to host a Yorkshire Cup on the site and on our Twitter feed and thankfully he agreed with the idea.
Unfortunately the hierarchy at each Yorkshire based club would never agree to a real-life Yorkshire Cup because of the potential minefield’s that this tournament would throw up. How many more 12:30 kick offs can we stomach?
So we at We All Love Leeds have taken it upon ourselves to construct a simulated version of a Yorkshire Cup.
The teams that will be competing will be, in alphabetical order, Barnsley, Bradford City, Doncaster Rovers, Huddersfield Town, Hull City, Leeds United, Middlesbrough, Rotherham United, Sheffield United, Sheffield Wednesday and York City. These team’s will be split into two random groups of five team’s, this will be after Bradford City and York City contest a Qualifying game to determine which one of those shall take the tenth spot. These two teams will contest a Qualifying match because they are the two lowest ranked Yorkshire teams in the Football League.
For readers who support a different team other than Leeds, please be assured that, if you wish to keep an eye on events as it unfolds on our Twitter feed, it is completely un-biased towards Leeds United. In fact during a dummy run I did, Hull City won the cup on penalties.
If this is successful then I hope to host the Yorkshire Cup a few times during this coming season and would like to invite any fan from any of the Yorkshire teams competing to take control of thier team, all you would need to do is be free on a set evening for a few hours, have your computer/email account to hand and to have an account on Twitter. This is so you can send me your formations and starting line-ups/substitutes for each game, if you are interested in participating in the next Yorkshire Cup please add a comment at the bottom of this page with your name, Twitter alias and the team you support.
Finally, join us tomorrow from 5pm on Twitter (@weallloveleedsu) and watch the first Yorkshire Cup unfold.
By Nigel Swain
I've seen today in the Yorkshire Post a suggestion that the fans should contribute to the future of Leeds United.
What a great idea. But how?
It's simple really. We all just chip in. Where's the problem?
I suppose the problem is how? Surely it’s impossible... But is it really?
We have people that want to sell large bits of the club......and we'd like to own it.
So how could this come about? Easy really.
To buy ten percent then the owners would want £3,000,000.
That's a lot of money. What can we do?
£3,000,000 divided by 10,000 people paying £300 makes the money up and you'd think would secure 10% of the company.
Let's go a step further. We have owners that need cash. It's possible that 10,000 people could pay £100 each now and another £100 in December. Another in May would mean 3 million pounds to GFH and the supporters own 10%.
Why not offer to do the same again the year after??? Now we own 20% and have a say. Don't try to buy supported funded players.
We set this up as a company and everybody who invests owns their share.
This all sounds mad, but why?
We have a board looking for investment and we want to support our club.
Just think, you pay £100 now plus another £100 December and another in May.
All we need to do is register 'Marching on together LTD' and we could do this.
But at this point we need a leader. This is where Gary Cooper needs to stand up. I will stand beside him.
Separate to this I am on a business trip and passing through Kuala Lumpur. The bloke next to me in the bar is a Leeds fan living here. He says 'when do you want my £300?'
We could do this. Who wants to own a share of their club.
I'll pay to register 'marching on together.co.uk' if you all want to do it.
Leeds United without the debt from the East Stand loan is sustainable. Let’s do it. Let’s own 10 % of Leeds United and be even prouder. Let’s tell them we'll have 10% next year too.
By Rob Atkinson
Leeds United have achieved promotion to the top League of English football (Football League Division One of blessed memory) on two occasions within my lifetime – 1963/64 and 1989/90. Both promotions followed significant lower status periods – we don’t really do “bounce-back” promotions – and here we are again, a decade away from the game’s shop window, and this time we actually plumbed the depths of the third tier for the first time in our illustrious history. So – talking about history – do those last two promotion successes have anything to teach us today? The answer seems to be: yes, quite a bit. But there’s not much encouragement to derive from the lessons of yesteryear.
The fact appears to be that the last two Leeds United sides to have achieved promotion to the top flight both did it with quality to spare. Both finished as Division Two Champions, and both squads included a number of players who would go on to help add to the Club’s Honours Board. In 1990, the team that pipped Sheffield United for the Second Division title included as mainstays Gordon Strachan, Gary Speed, Lee Chapman, Chris Fairclough, Mel Sterland and David Batty. That’s over half a team, and all of those players figured heavily in the squad that won the last Football League Championship title in 1992. Also appearing in that “Last Real Champions” line-up were four more survivors of the 1990 promotion side: Carl Shutt, Imre Varadi, John McClelland and Mike Whitlow. So TEN members of the promotion squad were good enough to figure in the season that brought the ultimate League honour back to Elland Road. All but Batty and Speed were incoming transfers, some costing what was significant money for the late eighties.
In 1964, the picture was similar, though with more of a bias towards home-grown talent – unsurprisingly given the quality of the youngsters coming through from an outstanding youth policy. The names trip off the tongue: Gary Sprake, Paul Reaney, Billy Bremner, Jack Charlton, Norman Hunter, Paul Madeley, Terry Cooper and Peter Lorimer. The ultimate success took longer to achieve for Revie’s boys, but all eight of these players, plus the genius of Johnny Giles – purchased for a song from Man U in a transfer Revie described as “robbery with violence” – were major contributors to the side which proved itself the best-ever in 1969. The later transfers in of Mick Jones and Allan Clarke, with the emergence of Eddie Gray from that legendary youth setup, simply applied the final coat of gloss to what was a very fine side indeed. The makings of champions were there in the 1964 promotion team, just as they were for that of 1990.
So what does all this tell us about the here and now? Nothing very happy, to be sure. The squad we have today might – with a few judiciously-selected additions – have some sort of chance of achieving promotion, though you’d have to say the lottery of the play-offs would be the likeliest route. And as a club, we’re famously poor at play-offs. But if we DID scramble promotion – what sort of foundation would there be for becoming a successful Premier League side? Hardly any, in truth. Look through the playing staff we have, and name players who might figure in a Premier League winning side in the next few years. Sam Byram, maybe – and probably, almost certainly – NOT in a Leeds United shirt. So we’re in danger of becoming the Leeds United side least well-equipped in living memory to go up, and stay up to do well. Much more likely though is that – with the element of quality so sadly lacking – we’ll just bob around in mid-table in the Championship, and listen to a load of excuses every week or so.
History shows that, on both the occasions we’ve won promotion in my lifetime, there has been relatively major investment in the team to make that possible. It was more the case in 1990 than in ’64, but the whole game was much more about money by the 90′s – and of course vastly more so today. But even in 1964, players had been added to the squad to see us over that promotion-winning line – Alan Peacock was an England-capped forward, bought for decent money from Middlesbrough. Bobby Collins commanded a fee even as a “veteran” when he moved to Leeds from Everton. In the 1990 side, Strachan, Fairclough, Chapman and Sterland all cost well into the six figures, as did John Hendrie and Vinnie Jones. This was proper investment, speculating to accumulate.
There is as yet no sign of any such visionary attitude from GFH Capital, and now we hear that Brian McDermott is finding things “not as he expected”, poor lad. Well, he probably assumed he was joining a big, ambitious club. He must be very disappointed – he certainly looked and sounded it in one interview I’ve seen in the last day or so. All we are currently hearing are the weasel words “caution” and “evolution”. There is also the gentle grinding of mental cogs as the owners cudgel their brains, trying to find the best way of managing fans’ expectations. Those expectations are understandable, having their roots in a proud and glorous history, from eras past when this club did things properly. Where expectations such as these are dashed, sooner or later there will be rebellion, whether it comes in the form of apathy over match-day attendance, or some more incendiary form whereby dissatisfaction might be expressed.
The owners of Leeds United would be well-advised to do a bit of rooting about in the Club’s history, both to see how things were managed when the people in charge knew what they were doing, and also to advise themselves of what happens with the support – and indeed the management – when they feel they’re having the urine taken out of them. That feeling is abroad right now, and it’s growing in its intensity.
Get your act together, GFH-C, and do it now.
By Keith Ingham
After a summer with the usual bombardment of names supposed to be signing on the dotted line, GFH delivered a statement to flatten even the most optimist Leeds
It's been said no news is good news, but with rumours abounding on Wednesday and the players due back tomorrow, the vice chairman 'answered' a few questions from the 'fans' and it didn't make good reading. Yes we've brought in a young inexperienced centre forward and they've said others may follow, but when people mention low ambition and costs I'm afraid nothing in this bit of PR has made me run down Elland Road with my cheque book flapping in front me.
I'm as loyal as most fans but I say here and now 'ENOUGH IS ENOUGH' we are what we are - an average Championship team with players on long contracts and little ability, if last year was a example. If the club builds at a slow pace I see more teams like Norwich coming knocking when any youngster shows promise.
I love my club and it's fans but I think that a club without ambition is one that cannot ask it's fans to continue to dig into their pockets for. As I say my loyalty will always be in Leeds 11 but I'm not been taken for a mug anymore!
By Kim Bjerregaard
The summer transfer window is opening on July 1st and after some horrible windows we are finally ready to set off and claim our place back in the Premier League with some class signings. GFH Capital promised they would spend some money and said that we should reserve judgement on them until the summer window was over, OH MY, are they in for a treat, if Leeds fans are good at anything it's at judging, so for Haigh and his buddies sake I really hope they deliever what they have promised us since the day they took over.
It might sound negative saying that Leeds fans are good at judging, but I actually feel it's fair enough that we do, we have had almost ten years of pain and lies, we deserve better then this and we especially deserve the truth after GFH came in with big words and promises of listening and involving the fans.
I know the window is yet to open but I still feel a bit concerned about the promised transfers, whenever I see us linked with a player that will cost us £1M and above reports are quickly out that we are looking at the possibility of a season long loan instead or that we are ruled out of the bidding before it even starts. I am not sure how I'd feel about another summer of broken promises and loans or signings of the quality like Habibou and Ryan Hall, or well I actually do know how I'd feel, I'd feel pissed off and lied to. The only positive there is to say about loan signings like Habibou is that we had the chance to return him to Belgium.
I have been considering whether it is all a smokescreen from GFH that we seem to be ruled out of any targets before even starting the window, they might just be cautious not to push the prices up before we put in bids, knowing that we are Leeds United, and if we want a player you can squeeze the prices up a bit.
Regardless of what happens I hope for some positive news while I'm on my holiday and I hope that GFH delievers, because like I wrote, judgement on them is coming to a town near you on August 1st.
Marching on together and thanks for reading! Have a nice summer.
By Steve Barras
The ‘silly season’ is upon us and we at We All Love Leeds would like to contribute in our own small way. Once a week we will post the latest rumours from legitimate sources, ones that we have heard but please feel free to leave your own rumours in the comments section at the bottom.
A former McDermott favourite at Reading and he has been released by the club after five years service. A re-union with his former manager could be on the cards after he has been linked with Leeds for most of the summer.
With a year left to run on his contract and clubs including Blackpool, Wolves and Leeds apparently interested in his signature, it seems that King is on the move this summer. Birmingham turned down a bid for the striker from Shanghai Shenhua in February.
Adam Le Fondre
It was rumoured that Brian McDermott was interested in re-uniting with Reading striker Le Fondre and the rumours haven’t abated, however Reading chiefs have said that new manager Nigel Adkins is under no pressure to sell any of their players. Hull City have also registered their interest.
Scottish crisis club, Hearts are willing to let go of
their Scottish u21 international for a cut price fee. Leeds are among a number of admirers and are thought to have made an enquiry about the nineteen year old left back.
Leeds have been linked with the £1million rated Mills in recent weeks. He signed for Bolton last summer but has featured sporadically during the campaign. He would link up for the second time with McDermott if the deal comes through. Bolton manager, Dougie Freedman is happy to sell but Leeds are understood to now prefer a loan deal.
Romanian striker Niculae currently plays for Russian outfit Kuban Krasnodar. Niculae is a fully fledged international player with thirty-nine appearances for his country.
Stokes has turned down a new deal at Scottish champions Celtic and is believed to favour a return to English football. Leeds however will only approach if they fail to land Kevin Doyle, who has recently denied that he has had any contact with Leeds.
Leeds have been linked with Romanian Tamas who currently plays for West Brom. Tamas is another fully fledged international with sixty-three appearances for his national side.