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Championship 2013-14
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3/8/2013
2-1 v Brighton
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Championship
League One 2008-09 5/4/2009
   
P
GD
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1 Leicester 41 37 83
2 Peterborough 41 24 81

3 Millwall 41 13 76
4 MK Dons 40 31 72
5 Leeds United 40 22 71
6 Scunthorpe 39 17 67

7 Southend 41 -2 64
8 Tranmere 40 11 63
9 Oldham 41 2 59
10 Stockport 41 5 57
11 Colchester 41 -1 57
12 Huddersfield 41 -6 57
13 Walsall 41 -4 55
14 Bristol Rovers 39 17 54
15 Leyton Orient 40 -11 48
16 Hartlepool 41 -9 46
17 Yeovil T 40 -23 46
18 Swindon T 41 -4 45
19 Carlisle 41 -14 44
20 Crewe 41 -18 44

21 Northampton 39 -1 42
22 Brighton 39 -20 36
23 Hereford 39 -29 33
24 Cheltenham 40 -37 31


February 2005 Archive

Early Return for Youngster
7th Feb 2005 :: by Jan-Eirik

21-year-old Leeds forward Simon Johnson has returned to the fold a month early from a second loan spell at Doncaster. The loan was terminated on the 6th following just two sub appearances during the loan, which didn't stop him scoring a consolation goal against Torquay on Saturday! During the earlier loan spell from December to mid January Simon netted twice in eight starts plus a sub appearance.

Simon lost his regular starting place to Cardiff loanee Andy Campbell. The situation was summarised by Dave Penny, the manager of Doncaster Rovers who said, "He wants first-team football instead of being on the bench so we decided not to extend the loan." Understandably, Simon wanted to return as the youngster can sit on an infinitely better bench at Elland Road! However his chances are limited by the imminent arrival of Rob Hulse (from Simon's hometown club WBA) and the current performances of David Healy and veteran Brian Deane

Has Johnson a future at Leeds? Have your say on our Leeds fans' forum

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Wolves Savage the Young
8th Feb 2005 :: Chris

Leeds Reserves wilted 3-1 under the fierce heat of an on-form Wolves reserve team at Telford tonight. As luck would have it new Wolves manager Glenn Hoddle was able to call on the experience of striker Dean Sturridge who is on his way back from injury. The Brummie-born striker played the full 90 minutes and hit the net twice in the win over the Whites. His first was a toe poke home after on-loan keeper Paul Harrison spilt the ball at his feet following a hot shot from the edge of the area by Chris Cornes.

Although the Leeds team featured five players with first team experience this season, plus the £7.5m Seth Johnson (also returning from injury), they could do nothing against the Wolverhampton Reserves. Wolves moved further ahead with a well taken free-kick by Cooper that crossed over the Leeds' defensive wall and past Harrison.

Sturridge made it 3-0 after springing the offside trap and a successful one-on-one with the disappointing Harrison.

Michael Duberry, who turned down a loan move to Forest last week, scored a late consolation goal against the team that tried to sign him at the start of the season! Although Dave Jones has left Wolves his replacement Hoddle was said also to be interested in Duberry. Let's hope the goal convinced him to make a move again for the wanted-away (that's not a typo) striker.

That's the third straight defeat for the LUFC Reserves who are now without a win since 6th December, 2004 and who are firmly ensconced at the foot of the Reserve League Table with a miserable 13pts from 18 matches. Still on the bright side we still have a reserve team!!

Leeds Utd Team:
Paul Harrison, Simon Madden, Ben Parker, Matthew Spring, Simon Walton, Michael Duberry, Nick Gray, Kevin Smith, Simon Johnson, Seth Johnson, Martin Woods. Subs: Gavin Rothery, Mark Wilberforce, Brenton Leister, Stewart Edwards, Steven McKeown.

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Concerns Over Hulse Move?
3 months or permanent move?

8th Feb 2005 :: by Badalemente

T


he 25-year-old WBA striker, Rob Hulse, was set to agree a three-month loan move to Leeds last week with a view to a permanent deal. However, the deal hit snags and was not completed. Meanwhile, three other Championship clubs, Ipswich, Wigan and Sunderland have all thrown their hat in the ring.
 

Rob Hulse
Delays Drag On

 

Nonetheless, Kevin Blackwell remained confident that Leeds are the club that will land Hulse this week. Possession is nine points of the law so they say and we have him! Blackwell said: "Rob came with us to Burnley and hopefully we can sort one or two things out." Thankfully Rob Hulse saw his potential new club gain a useful away win at Turf Moor, though he will have noticed another blank day for our current strikeforce, with midfield Icelander Gylfi Einarrson heading the winning goal.

As for the cause of the delay Blackwell was more cryptic, "We couldn't do the loan deal in time last week so let's hope we do it soon." On Monday the official website said, "Leeds expect to complete the loan signing of ... forward Rob Hulse ... later today." However, it is Tuesday lunchtime and still no signing. Let's hope it doesn't develop into a Shaun Derry-like farce.

One can only speculate as to the cause of the lack of agreement. It is thought that Blackwell is very keen to have an option to make the deal permanent at the end of the season. He wants a chance to see Hulse in a white shirt to avoid the "buying a pig in a poke" scenario that existed pre-season and that landed him with Cadamarteri, Rickets and Joachim.

Without the option, from a fan's viewpoint, Hulse is still an attractive loan-in to cure the goal drought up front at Leeds but does nothing to solve the problem next season. With even the Chairman admitting he doesn't want promotion this season, a cure for this season's problems is not reason enough to bring Hulse to the club. Without the option to make the deal permanent Blackwell should look elsewhere. Blackwell has a rare opportunity for a manger, to not be under pressure for results for the rest of the season. He can use the games to try out players with a view to permanent moves for them in the summer and avoid the "if you've got a pair of boots, you're in!" scenario that prevailed at Elland Road last summer.

Should we bring in Hulse regardless or look elsewhere? Go to our Leeds' fans forum

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Fame Beckons A Fan
7th Feb 2005 :: by Badalemente

Championship sponsor, Coca-Cola, is looking for a Leeds fan to represent our club at an advertising photocall.

To be eligible you must be available in London on the morning on Monday, March 7th, 2005. This is your chance of fame unless they are looking for a world-worn, middle-aged, Leeds fan - in which case you have competition :-)

To apply send your name and telephone number, indicating you are a Leeds fan, to:
Coca-Cola Promotion,
M&C Saatchi,
36 Golden Square,
London, W1F 9EE.

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Rob Hulse of ... LEEDS!!
Drawn-out drama delivers

9th Feb 2005 :: by Chris Hudson

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ob Hulse, has agreed a three-month loan move to Leeds until the end of the season. At the moment there is no news as to whether Blackwell managed to get an option to make the deal permanent at the end of the 2004-2005 Season. Leeds managed to beat off competition from three other Championship clubs, Ipswich, Wigan and Sunderland for the loan signature. As to a permanent deal Stoke agreed a fee of £1.2m with Stoke in January but Rob Hulse turned down the move to the Britannia Stadium. Even with an option to buy there remains the small problem of getting a million pounds to sign him but, hopefully, Chairman Bates will find the funds?
 

Rob Hulse
Leeds' Latest Striker

 

Despite the delays all has seemingly ended well and Leeds have avoided the egg-on-face scenario that occurred over our much publicised attempt to sign Shaun Derry from Palace.

Crewe-born Hulse came up through the much vaunted ranks of Dario Gradi's Crewe Alexandra (like our very own Seth Johnson.. er...) scoring 64 goals in just under 4 years. A performance that led Megson's WBA to pay £750,000 for him and which he repaid by becoming their top scorer in a promotion season. However, this season in the Premiership, with the premature departure of Megson, he has been displaced. New Throstles manager, Bryan Robson, explains,

"I feel Rob needs first-team football to go forward in his career and as we've now got Robert Earnshaw, Kevin Campbell, Geoff Horsfield and Kanu ahead of him in the squad his opportunities will be limited."

Hulse will be eligible to make his debut against Reading on Saturday.

Hulse was very positive when interviewed about the loan move.

"I was off to a reserve game on Wednesday night," Hulse told lufc.com, "When I got a call from my agent, saying to come up to Leeds and have a look round.
"I'd been told that quite a few clubs had come in for me and wanted to take me out on loan, but as soon as I knew that Leeds were interested - well, it's a massive club!"
"I see this as the ideal opportunity to get me playing football again. I'm under no illusions, I need to be playing football and I see Leeds United as the best place to be.
"I know that my match fitness is down, but I've looked after myself and I've worked extremely hard in the gym and after training. I know I'm fit, it's just a case now of getting match fitness under my belt and hopefully that won't take too long."

The delay in signing has raised the question in many Leeds' fans minds about the desire of Rob to come to Elland Road. Did Blackwell have to sell the club to him?

"It didn't take much selling, it's Leeds United! You come to the training ground and there's everything here to make a footballer get better, get stronger, get fitter, so this should be ideal for me."

Will Hulse solve our striking problems? What about next season? Have your say on our Leeds' fans forum

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Keogh agrees 3 year Scunthorpe deal
10th Feb 2005 :: by Jan-Eirik

Young Leeds United striker Andy Keogh has agreed terms with Scunthorpe United on a three-year deal. However, the Irish 19-year-old will unavailable for Iron's Friday game at Southend after being away on international duty all week which has held up the deal. Iron manager Brian Laws told BBC Radio Humberside:
"Hopefully, Keogh will come for a medical on Monday and we'll get it all done and dusted."
The addition of Rob Hulse means that the young strikers of Leeds are even less likely to get a game. Chairman Bates said that Blackwell had identified five young players who were not going to make the grade and their release had freed up wages for the likes of Michael Gray and Rob Hulse.

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Bakke to Undergo Op
10th Feb 2005 :: by Badalemente

Leeds Utd's Norwegian midfielder Eirik Bakke faces more time out of action after suffering a minor setback in his return from injury. Bakke only returned to action last week from a cruciate ligament injury he suffered in pre-season.

He came on as a substitute against Brighton for three minutes and got booked! But he missed the 1-0 win over Burnley after pains in his knee. He now faces knee arthroscopy, a minor surgical procedure that will allow a surgeon to see the entire knee joint without the need for full surgery. Blackwell stressed that Eirik Bakke had been sent to the specialist as a precaution, and that hopefully all he requires is rest.

"Eirik felt a twinge in his knee last week and we pulled him out and sent him to a specialist. They will look into his knee over the weekend and we hope that everything is in order, but at the moment it is a niggling worry for Eirik because something doesn't feel quite right. If it's what we think it might be then it will be two or three weeks out for him, if it's nothing then it's just another week's rest."
Click here for details of Bakke's injury-ravaged last two years at Elland Road

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Loan Winger Departs!
12th Feb 2005 :: by Badalemente

French Southampton winger Leandre Griffit has returned home at the end of his unsuccessful one-month loan. Griffit played just 25 minutes for the first team in the 2-0 defeat to Derby at Pride Park where he subbed for Joachim after 65 minutes. The 21 year-old's display didn't persuade Blackwell to give him another chance the Championship.

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Justice Delayed Is Justice Denied
12th Feb 2005 :: by Jan-Eirik

> The farcical trial of Ali Umit Demir, the man accused of murdering Leeds fans Christopher Loftus and Kevin Speight, has been stopped once again. Incredibly five years have passed since the pair were murdered in Istanbul supporting Leeds United in the UEFA Cup semi-final against Galatasarary. Few Leeds fans have ever believed that Turkish justice would deliver a satisfactory conclusion for the victims' families and the latest twist just confirms those doubts. Those Leeds fans who witnessed the incomptence of Turkish police on the night will not be surprised to find that the rest of their judiciary is just as efficient. The trial of Ali Umit Demir was halted this time because no one noticed, in five years, that the forensic reports linking Demir's knife with the killings had not been properly signed by the scientists involved!

Meanwhile, the "alleged" killer is once again allowed out on bail, to enjoy his freedom, pending his acquittal - sorry - the conclusion of his fair trial. The farce is expected to finish in April or May unless they discover more technicalities on which to acquit, or maybe the evidence will just go missing?

We would encourage all Leeds fans to maintain their boycott of Turkey as a holiday destination until justice is done for the families of the murdered lads. It could have been YOU!

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Burning Crosses, Satan & Changes of Underwear
13th Feb 2005 :: by Autolycus

There was the rare sight of a mass change of underwear in Darlington this week after Satan was spotted prowling the streets. Satan, or Peter Ridsdale as he was known in he previous earth-form met with Quakers chairman Stewart Davies for lunch at The Williamson Motors Stadium this week. This prompted speculation that he was there to eat the local children... er that he might be interested in taking over and ruining Darlo. Terrified fans burnt crosses in the street and several first-born were offered up in sacrifice.

Luckily for Darlo fans Satan was simply there at the invitation of Davies as apparently they are friends and it was a mere social occasion involving a sacrificial goat for lunch.

The presence of the "Evil-Entity-Formerly-Known-As-Ridsdale" is sparking fear and terror whenever he is seen in a town with a league football club.
 

Great Beast 666
Great Beast 666

 
Since he was 'cast-out' of Barnsley the Horned-One has been looking for another lair and fans are terrified of being infected with the 'Leeds curse' which Satan is known to carry. His recent presence at Bloomfield Road prompted suggestions that Ridsdale was looking to invest in Blackpool, though chairman Karl Oyston has since dismissed those links and performed an exorcism just to be sure. Apparently church attendances in Blackpool have tripled since his appearance in the town!

Even the God-fearing Welsh have received a visitation from the Evil One, when the Burghers of Wrexham woke up to find the Dark One amongst them. Luckily for them the finances of Wrexham FC was already in such a parlous state that Ridsdale felt he could do no more damage and moved on without spreading death and pestilence in the Valleys.

Such has been the reaction to Ridsdale's visits that it is rumoured that several local councils are considering placing Ridsdale under Anti-Social Banning Orders to prevent him coming near their clubs because of the economic damage it does to the local economy and because it causes the value of shares in their local league clubs to plummet.

There's a free Leeds Utd shirt on offer to anyone who can successfully get Ridsdale elected to the Board of Manchester United. We have faxed a copy of his CV to Malcolm Glazer; we admit we were a bit economical with the vérité re the Leeds United period but hopefully Malcolm will come under Satan's glad-handing spell.

So, when you are next at your ground, watching your team and you hear a tremendous flapping of wings, and a great shadow is cast over the pitch and the air is foul with the stench of decomposition - BEWARE! SATAN HAS CHOSEN YOUR CLUB TO "SAVE"!

Are we being a tad harsh on he bloke? Or should he be crucified on the goals in front of the Kop? Have your say on our Leeds fans' forum

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Police Investigate Bowyer, Woodgate Payments and Ferdinand Transfer
14th Feb 2005 :: by Autolycus

According to the Sunday Times, the Serious Fraud Office and West Yorkshire police are to launch a criminal inquiry into the financial dealings of Leeds United whilst Peter Ridsdale was at the helm.

They will examine the arrangements under which the then Leeds United board, under Peter Ridsdale's chairmanship, paid £3m in legal fees for the defence of Jonathan Woodgate (Real Madrid) and Lee Bowyer (Newcastle United) during their trial on affray charges over an incident in which an Asian youth was seriously injured.

They will also investigate the circumstances surrounding both the sudden financial implosion of Leeds United and the transfers of Rio Ferdinand to Manchester United and Robbie Fowler to Manchester City

This investigation by the SFO was prompted by a confidential inquiry by the Department of Trade and Industry into the Directors' running of Leeds United plc up to March 2003 when Leeds had debts of over £80 million pounds.

Finger on the pulse as always, Ridsdale knew nothing about the SFO investigation when questioned by journalists. As usual, Ridsdale trotted out the usual denials that anything went wrong (and presumably if it did it was not his fault, he was merely the Chairman?) At least he spared us his Martin Luther King impression, "We lived the dream". Ridsdale insisted that Leeds United plc was run properly under his chairmanship and that he is willing to help investigators in their enquiries, if need be.

"I have no knowledge of this [investigation], nobody has spoken to me about it," said Ridsdale. "I am more than happy to co-operate with any investigation.

"While I was there, it was run properly. I have no problem with that at all". [No problem with a bankrupt club? - Ed]

"That which I have knowledge of, was done properly." [Hint of a wriggle there? -Ed]

Ridsdale, who recently ended his association with League One club Barnsley, has revealed that he is looking into new roles with three different clubs. "I would like to talk to them, look forward and put the past behind me." We all would Ridsdale, but first, Leeds fans want some payback for the destruction of their team and club, and maybe we're gonna get it!
Go SFO!

Read our story on Ridsdale's attempts to find footballing employment - Burning Crosses, Satan & Changes of Underwear

Justice at last? Have your say on our Leeds fans' forum

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Keogh Now An Iron Man
14th Feb 2005 :: by Badalemente

The Irons have got their man and finalised the signing of young forward Andy Keogh from Leeds United. The deal was agreed between the clubs last week.

With all the strikers currently at Leeds Utd, signed by Blackwell, Keogh realised he wasn't even going to get on the bench in the near future and has sensibly decided to take the opportunity of real football in a league that matters rather than 'doing a Duberry'. The 18-year-old product of the Thorpe Arch Academy signed a three-year contract with League Two promotion-chasers Scunthorpe United and should be available for Tuesday's League Two trip to Wycombe Wanderers. Andy Keogh's permanent move to Glanford Park comes after he impressed Irons boss Brian Laws during a loan spell at the start of the season.

"I'm delighted the deal has gone through and I'm really looking forward to start playing," Keogh told the club's official website.

"I didn't have any doubts about the move, I just wanted to discuss it with my family and confirm that I was making the right decision.

"As young lad, I was shocked when the bid came in for me, I hoped I'd impressed during the loan move, but didn't expect anyone to come in for me.

"I want to play my part in helping the team achieve promotion and score as many goals as possible."

We wish him well and no doubt will see him playing against us in pre-season friendly soon.

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Duberry! Don't be silly!
15th Feb 2005 :: by Jan-Eirik

Alan Pardew has ruled out a move for Whites defender Michael Duberry. The Hammers boss, talking at today's open training session at Upton Park denied that he was attempting to sign the Leeds defender, who was linked with the Hammers in this morning's tabloids and on many websites.

West Ham United manager Pardew is looking for an on-loan defender for the remainder of the season after learning that Christian Dailly will be out of action for the next month at least with a troubling thigh injury.

“There are four of five we are looking at but it would be unfair to talk about players under contract. We need a defender quickly and I hope to have one before our game with Plymouth on Saturday.”

Despite a good loan period at Stoke and the reported interest of ex-England, now Wolves, manager Glenn Hoddle, Duberry continues to play like Bambi on ice when in a Leeds shirt! Pardew was dissuaded from pursuing his interest by the attitude of the defender, who luxuriates in Ridsdale/Premiership wages at Leeds and shows no inclination of giving up the good life to actually kick a football in anger.

Duberry has already had the opportunity of working with winner, Gary Megson, at Nottingham Forest. Apologists for Enfield-born Duberry say he wants a move further south. The truth is he won't give up his wages until they're prised from his cold, dead hands. By which time he'll have become rich playing for United's reserves but have actually got no footballing career to look back on. What a waste...

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Hibees Striker To Replace Hulse?
15th Feb 2005 :: by Jan-Eirik

Derek Riordan, the highly-rated Hibernian youngster who has played a major part in the Hibees impressive Scottish Premier League season is being touted as a permanent summer signing to partner David Healy. Despite the stunning debut by Rob Hulse against Reading on Saturday there is no word as to whether the loan deal includes a permanent signing option. All we have is a vague expression of hope from Blackwell who said: "Rob will cause teams lots of problems. After the three months we'll look at things and see what we can do."

There is also a question mark over whether Leeds can afford the £1.2 million transfer fee for Hulse. Indeed, if he continues to play as well as he did on Saturday the price will rise and Leeds could find themselves outbid in a Championship auction by clubs whose finances haven't been emasculated by Peter "It's not my fault" Ridsdale.

The player is also currently linked with Everton and the Old Firm although all three are non-starters for different reasons.

Riordan has scored 17 goals so far this season. His stats for Hibs overall are:
SPL Played 54(19) Goals: 33;
SFA Cup Played 3(2) Goals 0;
SLeague Cup: Played 7(3) Goals 5.
An average of 0.43 goals per game!!

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Keane Forced Out
What goes around comes around

16th Feb 2005 :: by Querpo

R


obbie Keane, the former Leeds United, Wolves and Coventry City striker is reportedly on the move again as Martin Jol favours his own choices. The Republic of Ireland striker was taken off at half-time on Saturday despite scoring Spurs' first-half penalty (yet another penalty!) in the FA Cup replay win over West Brom.

With Fredi Kanoute and new signings Mido, Mounir El Hamdaoui competing for a place in the side alongside in-form Jermain Defoe, Robbie Keane will be the player forced to leave White Hart Lane. Keane abandoned Leeds United after Venables' first two games in charge but this time the boot is on the other foot and Keane will now find out what it is like to be dumped by a new manager.

At Leeds Keane slapped in a transfer request right at the end of the transfer window and engineered a last minute sale at the start of the 2002-2003 season for a cut-price £7 million to Spurs. This was a considerable loss on a player who had cost £12 million just 15 months earlier and whose paltry return was just four Premiership goals in 28 league appearances. Keane was on loan to Leeds from Inter Milan before the permanent move and when he was playing for a contract he scored 9 goals in just 18 Premiership appearances. Draw your own conclusions.

Everton and Manchester City were offered the chance to buy Keane in the January 2005 transfer window. It will be interesting to see if Spurs manage to get back even the discounted price they paid us for him. Neither interested parties are exactly flush with money. Everton have already acquired Jamie "The Headbut" Beattie and Man City have just off-loaded expensive layabout Nicolas Anelka but suffered a similar Keane-sized loss to Fenerbahce. They are reportedly £44 million in debt and don't have a ground to sell! We think he will move elsewhere in the summer.

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Young Defender Returns to the Fold
16th Feb 2005 :: by Autolycus

Young defender Rob Constable has ended his spell at Conference strugglers York early and will return to Leeds United on Thursday, according to Teamtalk.

The 19-year-old player, who made just two starts (against Morecambe and Aldershot) in the York City midfield, was due to end his one-month loan spell on Sunday but will return to Elland Road carrying a slight ankle injury picked up in the Aldershot game.

Ministermen boss Billy McEwan left Constable out of the 1-1 draw against Forest Green Rovers last Saturday because he only wanted players in the team who would be at the club until the end of the season! Which begs the question why take the kid on loan in the first place? But this is football and logic has no place in it!

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The Chief Completes A Full 90 Minutes!
Radebe Makes Welcome Return

16th Feb 2005 :: by Querpo

L


eeds United veteran defender Lucas Radebe enjoyed a successful return from long-term injury in Tuesday night's Football for Hope charity game in aid of the Asian Tsunami disaster fund.
 

the chief
The Chief

 

It was The Chief's first game since rupturing his Achilles tendon in Leeds' third game of the season against Wolves away at Molineux, and it went better than anyone could have imagined. Lucas only expected to play for around twenty minutes in the game because of the large squads that had been named for Ronaldinho's World XI against Andrei Shevchenko's Europe XI. But this is football, and there were a number of last minute withdrawals and Lucas completed the full 90 minutes!

This is an impressive achievement for the 35-year-old in his first game back from injury even if it was played at exhibition pace. He was rarely troubled and is understood not to have had a reaction to the workout.

Radebe is now on course to make what is expected to be his final appearance for Leeds before the end of the season. His contract is due to expire in the summer but he may be retained in a coaching capacity. However, with Mr Bates' new financial broom there may not be room for seniment and Lucas may leave the club completely in the summer. Of course Lucas will play in his own testimonial the details of which will be announced soon.

For the record, 40,000 attended the game at the Nou Camp last night and raised over £5m for the Asian Tsunami disaster relief. Ronaldinho's World XI, Radebe's side, won the game 6-3! Always a winner! :)

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Bates Fends Off Predators
16th Feb 2005 :: by Badalemente

Predatory Premiership clubs will have to return to pilfering players from the smaller clubs now the fire sale at Leeds United is well and truly over. Kevin Blackwell says that the arrival of cuddly Ken Bates (the 'irascible pensioner' - The Guardian) as chairman of Leeds United has meant that the club have been able to turn down offers for players. This comes as a surprise to many especially the prospective buyers who view Leeds as a Chicken Farm - where everything goes "Cheap, Cheap, Cheap!". It will also come as a surprise to the shell-shocked Leeds fans who have even seen Barry the Goldfish leave the club!

It was the Leeds manager, Kevin Blackwell, who spoke to BBC Sport about this policy change, as Ken Bates has been unusually shy of the media since he took over Elland Road:

"The chairman has come in and given us stability.

"We can now start to look ahead rather than firefighting and looking who is going to be sold.

"We had two offers come in for two of our young players in January and for the first time in my 15 months here we were able to turn them down."

And Blackwell revealed that the new chairman has been enthusiastic in his desire to restore Leeds to their previous status as one of the country's leading clubs.

"I've had a couple of chats with the chairman and I've had dinner with him," said Blackwell.

"He has been positive and wants success and I've found him so far an enjoyable experience working with him."

Blackwell added the arrival of Bates at Elland Road on 21st January had an immediate impact on the crippled club.

"I think it is right to say the club can now move towards a position of stability.

"Talk of administration has been rife until three weeks ago but Ken Bates has come in as the new chairman.

"The debts seem to be manageable right now and the chairman has given us a bit of a stable footing.

"There has been a big sigh of relief from everybody at the club."

Bates, the former Chelsea chairman, has bought a 50% stake in Leeds United using the vehicle of a Geneva-based company, The Forward Sports Fund. He is hoping to reverse the necessary emergency financial measures taken by the previous Board to save the club from administration and eventually to buy back Leeds' famous Elland Road stadium and the state-of-the-art Thorp Arch training ground and academy.
"The chairman has come in and allayed a lot of people's fears and that translates into people having a lot more confidence to come in and do their jobs," added Blackwell.

"And for the first time we can sit down and look forward to next week whereas there was no doubt at one point we were fearing it."

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Bakke Out of Action Again
17th Feb 2005 :: by Jan-Eirik

Injured Leeds United midfielder Eirik Bakke will be out of action for a further 4 weeks according to Kevin Blackwell.

As reported earlier the former Norwegian international midfielder underwent an arthroscopy on his knee after withdrawing from a training session with a swollen knee. He then had a further minor operation to clean up the cartilage.

Bakke has spent nearly two years as a bit part actor in the Leeds United drama owing to injuries, some caused by his own stupidity. Recently, he missed the last few months of the 2003/04 season with tendinitis, and then suffering a cruciate ligament injury during United's preseason tour of Sweden in July.

After a few reserve team games in January 2005 he returned to first team action for five minutes against Brighton (getting booked in the process) and played in one more reserve game before the problem recurred.

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Leeds Utd Land Derry
And its a permanent deal!

16th Feb 2005 :: by Autolycus

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eeds United have completed the surprise signing of Shaun Derry from Crystal Palace on a permanent transfer in time for the midfielder to be available for tomorrow's trip to Wigan, according to the club's official website. There were no leaks in the press about the resurrected deal and it has come out of the blue, which is a pleasant change from the agonisingly drawn-out, very public, deals of the previous regimes. Clearly Bates is decisive and when he says negotiations are secret that is how they stay. Nice one Ken!
 

title
Derry Aire

 

Shaun Derry was in the second month of a loan spell with Championship strugglers Nottingham Forest when he was recalled on Thursday by Palace and he arrived at Thorp Arch earlier today to finalise his move. He had a Leeds medical back in November before his aborted move. He has already trained with his new team-mates ahead of leaving for the game at the JJB on Saturday. Whether Blackwell will change a winning team remains to be seen. It may be that Derry will start on the bench as Blackwell revels in having options on his subs bench instead of kids!

The 27-year-old midfielder had been set to join Leeds back in November but the deal fell apart at the last minute.

Leeds United boss Kevin Blackwell has been a long time admirer of Shaun, a player he worked with at Sheffield United, he told the official club website, www.leedsunited.com:

"His track record for Portsmouth and Crystal Palace has been impressive and his experience in the middle of the park will go a long way to strengthen our squad.

"He's been involved in this division for a few years now and is a battler. He is a fierce competitor, while he is also powerful, strong and at 27, he is coming up to the right age for a midfielder."

Derry's record at Forest this season is Played 8 Won 2 Drawn 2 Lost 4 - so let's hope he has a more positive influence at Elland Road!

Nottingham-born Derry began his career as a trainee at Notts County, moved on to Sheffield United in Jan 1998 for £700,000 and was snapped up by Portsmouth in March 2000 for £300,000 before a £400,000 switch to Selhurst Park in August 2002.

The fee for Derry will be not be disclosed and he has agreed a two-and-a-half-year contract at Elland Road.

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Blackwell Speaks About the Future

"We are talking about Leeds in the right half of the table, moving in the right direction and looking a better team"

18th Feb 2005 :: by Vino Veritas

L


eeds United fans were able to witness the first ever league meeting between Wigan and United live on Sky, but most wished they hadn't bothered. The game at Elland Road at the end of October 2004 was watched by 27,432 and came as Wigan topped the tableand Blackwell's hotchpotch squad tried to find their feet and each other! Despite facing the Championship's two in-form strikers the Whites had hopes of taking at least a point because of the debut that day of David Healy, newly signed from Preston.
 

Latics Losers!
Latics

 
Despite the optimism, Healy's debut was not as good as that of Rob Hulse's last week against Reading. He, and Leeds, ended up goaless as Wigan ran out worthy winners 2-0 with goals from Mahon and Bullard. Mahon's came just a minute into the 2nd half and was a key point in the game. After his goal Leeds Utd. were never in it again.

Tomorrow, we make the journey over the Pennines to Wigan's JJB stadium filled with optimism once again.
 

We are Leeds
Shining Brightly Again!

 
Buoyed by two wins on the trot, the signings of Michael Gray, Rob Hulse and his fantastic double-strike debut and the signing today of Shaun Derry, the team and its fans have genuine reasons to be optimistic. But it isn't just they who are happy, hard-working Leeds United manager Kevin Blackwell is quite chirpy too! He says Leeds United are far better equipped to take on title-chasing teams like Wigan than they were four months ago when they first met in the Championship.

Blackwell is delighted with the way his squad has come together over the last few months and put together a run of results that leaves them tantalisingly close to the play-offs. The current league table is slightly misleading, over-stating Leeds' relative position because we have played more games than all other teams in the Championship. Nonetheless, as for the teams below us we can say to them, a point in the hand is worth two points in the bush - ahem! And to the teams above us with games in hand, they must win them to turn potential into points and any losses will adversely affect their goal differences.

Kevin is clearly enthused by the recent positive turn of events at Elland Road.
 

Kuddly Ken
"Irascible Pensioner"
The Guardian

 
The arrival of Mr Ken Bates as de facto owner of Leeds has provided Kevin with his first real freedom as Leeds manager to select and bring in players who aren't available for free. The previous Board deserve credit for finding the funds to allow Gregan and Healy to move to Leeds despite what we know was an almost terminal case of 'no money' disease! But Bates is now clearly backing the manager and loosening the grip on the purse strings which have been in force for nearly two years. Again credit is due to Ken Bates for giving Blackwell support, backing his judgment on players and also giving him a chance to prove himself when so many journalists predicted Bates would quickly install his own choice as manager. According to the manager everything is going as expected; Blackwell said that whilst his team would struggle to begin with, they would slowly but surely emerge as a force in the Championship. The unexpected Bates takeover has perhaps accelerated that improvement to the extent that some now see Leeds as a play-off prospect. He told the official club website, www.leedsunited.com,

"I did say that we would get better in the second half of the season and that's logical when the team are given more time to settle," said Blackwell.

"Performances have been decent but the results just weren't forthcoming. I believe we have a side now that can compete with anybody. We have slowly put in a signing here, a signing there and that's why we have been consistent since November.

"But we have to make sure we maintain what we are doing, don't get carried away but treat every game as a massive, massive game.

"We have to give everything we've got towards beating Wigan this weekend and then look at it after that."

Blackwell, referring to the 0-2 reverse against Wigan in October, then told the official club website, www.leedsunited.com
"The turning point of the game was Mahon's goal just after half time and for the twenty minutes after that they murdered us. The first 45 minutes there was not much between the teams but they gave us a lesson after that and we know how dangerous they can be.

"They have been together for four years, it also showed that nearly £10m has been spent on that team.

"Although the team was down, they didn't stop fighting and I knew that was something that would be key for the first part of the season, the team spirit and the work ethic. Even though we weren't going to win we never gave in easily.

"For me that twenty minute spell left me thinking that that was how we want to be, but there is no doubt that the teams at the top have the best quality players and quality costs money. If we want to go there too then we have to try and get quality players and that means money - something which hasn't been afforded to me all season.

"That's why I give the players credit for dealing with adversity on and off the pitch and they've handled it brilliantly and left us in a position where we can forget about the R-word and look at the P-word. That's a massive thing for anybody." [For those crap at word games he means 'Relegation' and 'Promotion']

The manager is further encouraged by recent results at the JJB Stadium, where Wigan have suffred a drop in form, losing to Stoke and Derby. Conversley, United are looking for their third consecutive league win for the first time in a staggering two and a half years. Blackwell said,

"Stoke went there the other week and came away with a good result so we know there's a chance of getting something there.

"But we have to be fully focused and on our game. If we are not then we will be punished because they have that quality, but I think the difference now is that we go there in better shape than when we played them at home in October.

"We are not in bad shape, but we have to remember that six months ago we didn't have a team here and now six months down the line fans are talking about the pride being back.

"We are talking about Leeds in the right half of the table, moving in the right direction and looking a better team. I think we will still get better and we have something tangible to build something on."

Paul Jewell, manager of Wigan Athletic, is without long-term absentee Per Frandsen for the game while defender Emerson Thome is out with a hamstring strain. The Latics are in a desperate fight for the second automatic promotion place with Sunderland (with leaders Ipswich seemingly unstoppable at the moment) and so will be a tough act to beat.

Ladbrokes make Wigan 4/6 favourites with Leeds 7/2 to win and the draw is at 9/4. Our www.leedsutd365.co.uk prediction? A 2-2 draw.

The last and only time Leeds Utd played at Wigan was on 14th, March, 1987 in the FA Cup 6th Round, when Leeds won 2-0.

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Police Investigate Bowyer, Woodgate Payments and Ferdinand Transfer
14th Feb 2005 :: by Autolycus

According to the Sunday Times, the Serious Fraud Office and West Yorkshire police are to launch a criminal inquiry into the financial dealings of Leeds United whilst Peter Ridsdale was at the helm.

They will examine the arrangements under which the then Leeds United board, under Peter Ridsdale's chairmanship, paid £3m in legal fees for the defence of Jonathan Woodgate (Real Madrid) and Lee Bowyer (Newcastle United) during their trial on affray charges over an incident in which an Asian youth was seriously injured.

They will also investigate the circumstances surrounding both the sudden financial implosion of Leeds United and the transfers of Rio Ferdinand to Manchester United and Robbie Fowler to Manchester City

This investigation by the SFO was prompted by a confidential inquiry by the Department of Trade and Industry into the Directors' running of Leeds United plc up to March 2003 when Leeds had debts of over £80 million pounds.

Finger on the pulse as always, Ridsdale knew nothing about the SFO investigation when questioned by journalists. As usual, Ridsdale trotted out the usual denials that anything went wrong (and presumably if it did it was not his fault, he was merely the Chairman?) At least he spared us his Martin Luther King impression, "We lived the dream". Ridsdale insisted that Leeds United plc was run properly under his chairmanship and that he is willing to help investigators in their enquiries, if need be.

"I have no knowledge of this [investigation], nobody has spoken to me about it," said Ridsdale. "I am more than happy to co-operate with any investigation.

"While I was there, it was run properly. I have no problem with that at all". [No problem with a bankrupt club? - Ed]

"That which I have knowledge of, was done properly." [Hint of a wriggle there? -Ed]

Ridsdale, who recently ended his association with League One club Barnsley, has revealed that he is looking into new roles with three different clubs. "I would like to talk to them, look forward and put the past behind me." We all would Ridsdale, but first, Leeds fans want some payback for the destruction of their team and club, and maybe we're gonna get it!
Go SFO!

Read our story on Ridsdale's attempts to find footballing employment - Burning Crosses, Satan & Changes of Underwear

Justice at last? Have your say on our Leeds fans' forum

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"I will be very proud to be finally wearing a Leeds United shirt"

"There's a thing about Leeds and if you get the opportunity to put a shirt on you take it."

18th Feb 2005 :: by Autolycus

S


haun Derry has spoken to the official club website about his feelings on his successful move to Elland Road today. Doubly satisfying following the abortive transfer attempt last November.
 

Shaun Derry
Shaun Derry of Leeds United

 
By the time that transfer was called off Shaun had had a medical, trained with the squad and even been allocated a squad number! Crystal Palace then loaned him to his home-town club, Nottingham Forest for whom he played eight games until the loan was terminated early yesterday, Thursday after Bates-owned Leeds United revived their interest. Shaun spoke today to the official club website, www.leedsunited.com:

"I will be very proud to be finally wearing a Leeds United shirt," said Shaun.

"By working with Kevin in the past he's shown a keen interest in me and I was sure that once his rebuilding process got underway that it would come around again and I am just delighted that it has."

Referring to the failed transfer attempt he said:

"What happened back then is in the past, Ken Bates has come in and hopefully there will be a lot more stability at this club. With someone of his stature taking charge of the club it will lead to bigger and better things.

Referring to the immediate future he said:

"If I play tomorrow it will be a fantastic day for me and I can't wait for my home debut.

"There's a thing about Leeds and if you get the opportunity to put a shirt on you take it. This is the biggest move of my career in terms of the size and calibre of the club."

Derry knows Kevin Blackwell from their time together at Sheffield United where the Leeds manager was then the assistant manager. Speaking about his new manager he told www.leedsunited.com

"I get on well with Kevin as a person from our days together at Sheffield United but that seems to be a million miles away from where we are now. He's a very honest guy and that shows in his managerial skills -he's the kind of person you like to work for.

"He's the same down to earth guy and the boys seem to like him here and that rubs off on people and the whole place is buzzing."

Last season Derry was a member of the Crystal Palace team that got to the Premiership via the play-offs. They did so having been in a relegation position at Xmas. Dowie's team put together an extraordinary string of results to reach the play-offs and Derry hopes Leeds can do the same.

"It's important that there are people who have been on a run before and know what it's like to be in the top end of this league and there are many players here who are the better players in this division.

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Final Score: Wigan 3 v Leeds 0
19th Feb 2005 :: by Badalemente

Team: 4-3-3 Sullivan, Kelly, Gray, Carlisle, Butler, Derry, Gregan, Lennon, Wright, Healy, Hulse
Substitutes: Walton, Richardson, Seth Johnson, Ricketts, Deane

Wigan made a fast start and our defence had to be on song to keep them at bay. Conditons are very windy which will cause problems for the goalkeepers and the pitch is very muddy. Apparently the crowd are so loud that Wright and Gregan were having difficulty hearing each other! The crowd is 17177 and a number of Leeds fans only made it in five minutes after KO.

Nathan Ellington got the better of Michael Gray and a lunge by Gregan just pushed the ball into the path of Ellington who opened the scoring with his 19th goal of the season.

17 minutes: The goal has drained the confidence of Leeds. Poor clearance by Sullivan resulted in a chance for Bullard which was stopped by a magnificent save by Sullivan.

Gregan have a public falling out which is enjoyed by the Wigan crowd.

30 mins: Simple chance for McCulloch who fires straight at Sullivan.

32 mins Breckin tackle stops Derry going through on goal

Leeds keep losing posession which keeps giving Wigan loads of chances.

Roberts beats Butler twice and Sullly saves

35 mins: 'Goal' from Teale of Wigan. Offside given. Phew! Questionable decision.

Wright shot on target hits Jackson. Pass from Healy was poor and affected the shot.

Lennon rounds the keeper but offside against us this time

Leeds get first shot on target, Filan doesn't take it cleanly.

Half ends with Leeds more in the game. However, more dissention in the Leeds ranks, Lennon makes a hand gesture to Sullivan who races of down the tunnel after him!

Second Half

Lennon puts Hulse through but linesman flags offside

50 mins: Jackson brings down Rob Hulse in the box, from behind. Referee indicates "ball won".

Hulse booked by referee for vociferously complaining about the decision, he believes it is a tackle from behind.

Midfielder Teale stamps on back of Healy's leg. Freekick.

Awful free-kick by Wright.

Break by Roberts. Sean Gregan stops Teale getting a run on goal.

Poor set-piece defending. Jason Roberts has power header for the second GOAL!

60 mins: Derry booked for his first foul!

Substitution for Leeds. Fraser Richardson on. Jarmaine Wright off. Leeds go 4-4-2 at last! Healy moves to Centre-forward. Michael Gray goes to left midfield (where he played for Sunderland), and Fraser Richardson takes over at left-back.

Roberts booked for studs up tackle on Michael Gray.

Wigan hit the post. Then Mahon makes it three. Game Over...

Roberts is one-on-one on the keeper but Sullivan stands up as long as possible and makes a save. Wigan show they will be in the Premiership next season and Leeds will be in the Championship.

Leeds fans keep singing and show they are still Premiership supporters.

FULL-TIME

Leeds met the best footballing side in the Championship on a terrible surface and in poor conditions. But no excuses, Wigan are destined for the Premiership and Leeds a mid-table finish. Derry was anonymous in the second half. Sullivan was outstanding. Injured Einarrson was missed. Lennon and Wright were below par. Hulse was also anonymous today. Gregan deserves credit for his work rate. Hopefully Blackwell has finished adding to the squad and can concentrate on building a team spirit and improving teamwork. Leeds have debuted over 22 players this season so the current situation is understandable. The team needs time to gel and Blackwell needs to decide between 4-4-3 or 4-4-2. Hint: the answer is 4-4-2!!
Man of the Match: The Leeds Fans!

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