Ahead of tonight’s Yorkshire Derby against Sheffield Wednesday, Keith Ingham spoke to Louis Shackshaft about all things Owls.
How long have you supported ‘The Owls’?
I was born in 1986 and have supported Sheffield Wednesday ‘officially’ since 1991 after our 1-0 League Cup win over Manchester United. It was during the same campaign we was promoted to the Premier League, it’s a season I’ll never forget despite only being 5 years old.
What’s your favourite moment as a Wednesday fan. Season, game or any other occasion?
The strike by John Sheridan to secure our League Cup win has always been my favourite moment. However, more recently, the 3-1 aggregate victory over Brighton were both great occasions during the playoff journey. The playoff final versus Hull will also live long in the memory despite being on the wrong end of the result, it was a fantastic day out, one that I’ll always remember.
Tell us about a player that you were proud to have on the back of a shirt, if you didn’t is there one you wished you would have?
When I was a teenager I would have said Paolo Di-Canio, I had his name printed my Owls away shirts on a couple of occasions, but ultimately it has to be Chris Waddle. He was an exceptional talent and became a legend amongst us Wednesdayites.
Leeds United look set to follow up their interest in a former summer target.
The Whites have again entered the race for Mbaye Diagne as their injury crisis continues to tear its ugly head.
Leeds are currently without strikers Kemar Roofe, Patrick Bamford and lethal winger Pablo Hernandez; with Roofe and Hernandez another four weeks away from recovery.
Although Bamford may be the only player struggling to be fit during the January period; the injuries suffered have shown the teams threadbare status.
With this in mind Leeds could be set to go all in on Diagne as they attempt to bolster their attacking setup for the final charge of the season.
Diagne; who Leeds paid close attention to during the summer has been in scintillating form in Turkey for Kasimpasa and Leeds may need to strike quick if they are to beat rivals to his signature.
With eight goals in six appearances this season, Leeds are said to be joined by a host of clubs who are taking a keen interest in the forward who predominantly plays on the left wing or striker.
The 26-year old joined Kasimpasa from TJ Teda on a free transfer and is currently contracted until 2022. However, he could be available for between £2-3million should Leeds push through with this move.
With only youngsters Tyler Roberts and Ryan Edmundson available for selection for the foreseeable future, Leeds may want to plan for the worst come January and bring in fresh faces; Diagne being one of them.
Do you think Leeds should bring in additional cover at striker or continue their face in youngsters Roberts and Edmondson? Have your say in the comments below.
By Ryan Ingham
Aapo Halme seems to be raising his stock in the Leeds ranks as he continues his development.
The Finnish youngster has received plaudits after another solid display for the under 23’s against Bolton this week.
The 20-year old was said to be both strong in defence along with being very capable on the ball; being able to bring the ball out of defence to make plays. Sound familiar?
The ability to play the ball will be compared to both Liam Cooper and Pontus Jansson who are being utilised by Marcelo Bielsa to complete his free attacking side. If Halme can continue his run in the team and stay in games, it may not be long before it becomes apparent that he’s a star in the making.
Halme is now building his fitness having suffered a long term injury last season after his January arrival, preventing him from being in the picture until the beginning of the youth season.
The defensive partnership between Halme and Oriol Diaz looks set to be a consistent feature in the Development squad and both players could soon be utilised by Bielsa to fill in any gaps in the first team squad.
With Halme now beginning to justify the £500k paid by Leeds in January; are there any other youngsters than justify Victor Orta’s youth recruitment move?
By Ryan Ingham
While we were away;
Millwall vs Leeds United Match Report
Some things do change, under strength but still as strong as Leeds continued their unbeaten run with a 1–1 draw at Millwall. The draw keeps them at the top of the Championship by a point, Middlesborough lost at Norwich City so Leeds are the only unbeaten team left in the Championship.
With the squad under strength because of injuries to Gaetano Berardi, Pablo Hernandez, Kemar Roofe and Patrick Bamford, Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa shuffled his squad and Tyler Roberts was played as the lone striker with Jack Harrison continuing in a wide midfield role. Pontus Jansson partnered Liam Cooper in the centre of defence. Adam Forshaw returned to the substitutes bench after his spell out through injury.
Despite the fact that Leeds went behind to a second half goal by Jed Wallace they fought back to equalise through a superb goal by Jack Harrison with a minute to go. Elliot hit the post for Millwall in injury time but Leeds deserved their share of the spoils.
The mentality that keeps the players going until the last kick is reaping rewards, staying top is the prize for many hours of hard graft. Without doubt previous Leeds teams would have settled for a minimal defeat but this group, despite many being at the club for a few years now have somebody who believes in them and more importantly they believe in themselves.
Preston North End are next up and are the only team this far to beat Leeds this season in a Carabao Cup tie. Marcelo Bielsa’s team was vastly changed for the cup tie mind you and many given the opportunity did not perform very well. Alex Neil’s team lost at the weekend but will battle for every ball as they did in the game earlier in the season. I’d like to see Ryan Edmundson or Jack Clarke be given at least twenty minutes during the game. Leeds to win 2-1.
Man of the Match: Jack Harrison, the winger took his chance superbly.
David Watkins report on the history changing result at the Den
Thank you David
Andrea Radrizzani gave the Pope Francis a home Leeds United shirt as the pontiff toured the Vatican City where Radrizzani was in attendance. On the back of said shirt was ‘FRANCESO’ number 1.
The owner Tweeted:
“Emotional and unique moment to meet his holiness @pontifex and donate an @lufc jersey... 🙏🏻 💙 💛 ⚽️we have one special supporter.”
Leeds United have not only been hit with a busy schedule over the next month, but an injury crisis to boot.
Key players like Kemar Roofe, Pablo Hernandez, Gaetano Berardi and Patrick Bamford have all been confirmed for prolonged periods out.
Although Leeds do have excellent cover for the likes of Berardi and Hernandez in Pontus Jansson and Jack Harrison, the fact the clubs squad is so thin means any injuries to these players could leave the club in the lurch; especially with the brand of football new Head Coach Bielsa is promoting.
With Hernandez and Roofe; the club have lost August’s PFA Player of the Month and Player of the Month having contributed seven goals and four assists between them in the first month of the season.
Roofe however, who has been in scintillating form for the Whites this season will be a huge loss as Leeds face Millwall, Preston, Birmingham and Sheffield Wednesday prior to his expected return with no real backups.
Tyler Roberts is set to take the reigns for Leeds in their next competitive fixtures with one eye on youngsters Ryan Edmondson and Jack Clarke to potentially fill the void on the bench.
The loss of Roofe is only multiplied with the news Patrick Bamford is expected to miss the next four months with a torn MCL during an appearance for the development squad in the international break.
Any injury to the primary forward will be an incentive for the second forward to stake a claim for a starting spot chance, something which has been hard to come by for the £7million signing.
With several key players out for a prolonged amount of time; we will finally see how much the fringe players have bought into the new ‘Bielsa Ball’ and how ready they are for any adversity thrown at them.
By Ryan Ingham
So, there we have it, the first 13 per cent of the 2018/2019 Championship season is done and dusted and Leeds sit proudly on top of the pile with 14 points from 18, still unbeaten having played five decent sides and Rotherham! It all looks very positive as we contemplate the first 11 weeks of the reign of Bielsa the Brave.
But cast a thought back to this time last year, well, to the evening of September 9th last year to be precise as this season the games are slightly behind last year’s schedule.
On September 9th last year a Leeds United XI featuring Luke Ayling, Liam Cooper, Pontus Jansson, Pablo Hernandez, Samu Sáiz, Kalvin Phillips and Kemar Roofe and with Mateusz Klich and Stuart Dallas coming on from the bench, thrashed Burton Albion 5-0 in a devastating display of fast attacking football not seen for many a moon at Elland Road. Thomas Christiansen was hailed the new Messiah.
Heidi Haigh on a very early start, remembering two sadly passed fans and a thumping good away victory at Norwich City
Thank you Heidi
Impressive weekend for Leeds. Luke Ayling, Barry Douglas and Pablo Hernandez named in the WhoScored.com Championship team of the week. Well done lads. Pablo Hernandez was also included in the sky bet EFL Team of the Week.
With Leeds unbeaten and top of the Championship the Phil Hay looks at darker days under the tenure of David Hockaday, who’s seventy day stay ended this week with a League Cup defeat at Bradford City.
Thanks to the YEP and Phil Hay.
After some superb performances in the Leeds midfield Mateusz Klich has been recalled to the Poland international squad for the forthcoming games with Italy and Ireland.
Leeds United have beaten out a host of top European sides to announce the acquisition of a 16-year old superstar in the making.
Niklas Haugland looks to save announced his signature to the Whites having fielded interest from several of Europeans giants over the summer.
The Norwegian youngster looks set to become one of Leeds United’s scholars in a move that sees the club step ahead into the transfer market in order to secure the clubs future, a familiar move during new Owner Andrea Radrizzani’s tenure.
Haugland joins from Norwegian third tier minnows Fana IL on a free transfer and is under contract until 2020 when he will be able to sign professional terms at the club.
The 16-year old has experienced a surprising yet fruitful summer, having had trials at both Bayern and RB Salzburg; who failed to tie the player down to a long term deal along with AC Milan.
Leeds will now hope the forward can challenge for a starting spot in the Development Squad by challenging last seasons acquisitions in Sam Dalby, Kun Temenuzhkov and Ryan Edmondson.
Should Leeds continue to sign these talented youngsters from abroad or focus on more home grown talent? Have your say in the comments below.
By Ryan Ingham