By Keith Ingham
When Brian McDermott arrived to replace the derided Neil (Colin) Warnock it was generally seen as a bit of a coup by the owners GFH, a manager who was, some might say unfairly treated by his former club after his efforts had given them a team to reach the pinnacle of English football, the Premiership. Not a bad achievement for a team that was nowhere after ten games. The run getting there was incredible and McDermott deserved credit for it.
His first few games the players responded well with them kicking the round white thing to each other, not to the team they were playing or launching it into the heavens and hoping it would land on a white shirted players head. Two really important wins versus Wednesday and Burnley secured Championship football for the next season and the team played with more confidence than under 'Colin', not surprising really as apart from his favourites many had come under the lash of the tongue of the ex manager. We even managed to spoil Watford's party on the last day when Ross scored late, late into what seemed an endless injury time.
When the break came Brian McDermott produced a list of players said to number seven that could change the team and make us into a team that could challenge for the top six, as I'm informed we got three off his list, Noël Hunt had been with him at Reading, Matt Smith was a surprise but a young hungry striker seemed a good deal because he cost nothing. Seemingly Luke Murphy was Blackburn bound but came to Leeds for a million pounds, yes a million. All three were involved in the first game and Smith, on as a substitute headed on for Murphy to claim a injury time winner on the first day.
The trouble was we still had the 'deadwood' locked in for two and three year deals, cheers Warnock! So the money was very slow in appearing and with well over a million pounds going on wages, it doesn't take much to wonder why no more players came in until the purchase of Wootton from Salford for again we hear, a deal around a million pounds plus with add ons. It does make one think though if we had two million plus to spend why wasn't a winger bought before our already top heavy midfield was added to.
The manager's interviews are hardly giving fans much to hold on to and his 'not the right mentality' after the latest in a long line of defeats to Derby seem of a man coming close to the end of his tether. It's not been easy for him with not much financial support and losing Sam Byram for such a long time hasn't helped, but now he has him eighty per cent fit he sits on the bench, while Pelts tries his best to be a poor right back with little if any flair.
This break must do the manager and the squad some good because some how he has to find his best eleven and unless injuries happen stick with them, otherwise the players and the manager may find the boos growing louder in the Autumn and Winter months.
I feel this is the best we can offer with the squad we have:
Wootton, Lees, Pearce
Byram, Murphy, Mowatt, Austin, Warnock
I also think that GHF need to either 'put up or shut up' as the Chairman has publicly said that investment is forthcoming but so as they say is Christmas! At least when Bates was in charge you knew he was lying to you and made no bones about doing so. This lot have so much 'spin' I'm surprised they're not dizzy.
I still back McDermott by the way but he has to make harsh decisions to get this great club back on the road again and be quick about it.
On On On