By Adam Walker
Just when we thought a page had been turned… Clarity around the takeover deal has been secured, three wins on the bounce and the transfer window around the corner.
Sadly Leeds United were put back in their place by their bogey team, Derby County in a 3-1 defeat at Pride Park. The first half was abysmal and the scoreline at half-time was one I and I’m sure many others couldn’t believe. At the break Leeds United went in at 1-1 and I thought that Neil could’ve given the players a kick up the backside, like he is renowned for. True to common belief, Leeds came out in the second half and started playing well with a couple of good chances going in the direction of the Derby County goal. Some shocking defending assured that the Rams left with all three points. After winning three games in a row against the leagues front-runners such as Crystal Palace, Leicester and Huddersfield, we had a right to be disappointed, not only with the result but with the performance.
I said it at the start of the season and I’ll say it again. Neil’s signings in the summer were poor, at best. Even the signings I thought were beneficial have turned out to be not so much. The only players I’ve been impressed with that have come in this season have been Paddy Kenny and El-Hadji Diouf. Lee Peltier has been one of the worst, along with Jason Pearce, both of which haven’t bolstered our defence one bit. I don’t exactly know who to sign in defence but surely we can do better than these two? – Jason Pearce looked to be a steal for little money from Portsmouth. However, we all forgot that despite the good performances and the ten point deduction that Pompey suffered last year, they were still near the bottom of the table. We also signed Lee Peltier who didn’t impress at Leicester.
Why did we sign people who aren’t impressing? – We’re Leeds United and we need signings that stand out and make the difference week after week. I haven’t really been impressed with any of the midfield either. Norris, Green, Austin and even Tonge, despite his goals haven’t stood out for me. Fair play to Norris he is only getting back into the frame and playing games and I hope his performances improve. We needed an ambitious signing to play in midfield and I believe we’re yet to find this player. Green has been poor and looks like he doesn’t know his job on the pitch sometimes. He wanders around like a homeless man and never does anything to write home about. Austin was been a massive disappointment for me. I thought he was going to be the anchor man we needed in the midfield, to help out the defence and spray passes to the wings. Unfortunately, he has just turned out to be a massive battering ram with little skill, that’s how I see it anyway. Finally Tonge, he’s scored several goals now,
a lot of them being important ones too so I can’t really be unhappy at his goal contributions but as a midfielder, he hasn’t impressed me either. The panic signings of Ryan Hall and Varney haven’t gone down well either. Ryan Hall came on loan to go out on the wing, a position we have struggled to affiliate since the departure of Snodgrass and Gradel. It also is no secret that nobody is impressed by Varney. Maybe this is because we are used to seeing the likes of Snodgrass and Gradel on the Whites wings. Diouf’s performances have also become slightly slack and his future at Leeds United looks uncertain. Despite his poor form recently I have to admit I’d love him to stay a bit longer.
Crumbs of comfort we can take from the start of the 2012/13 season are that we’re still in a good position for the play-offs. I still don’t think we will get into the play-offs as we’re going to need some sort of miracle. However, January could spring up many surprises. I’m not sure what kind of money the new investors will be willing to spend on the squad. If they are feeling generous I’d like to see a number of players coming through the doors at Elland Road. I would like to see another centre-back. I want the defence to be solid and not conceding goals like those on Saturday. I also think it is of paramount importance that we sign someone for the wings. The wings in the last few seasons have been our nucleus; they have been our strongest point. I’d love to see a player like Max Gradel back at Leeds someone who can be signed for as little as Max was too. The centre of the midfield could also do with a makeover; however with so many mediocre players in that position, I deem it unlikely that Warnock will be looking for anyone to affiliate those areas.
What I also hope with this upcoming transfer window is that if Warnock is given the money to sign
players, I just pray that he doesn’t go through his old directories and sign
players he’s already worked with, eight years ago. We need some more youth in
the side. We got torn apart by young Will Hughes of Derby County on Saturday and
I’d hope that Warnock could sign someone like that, maybe a bit older though.