Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Seniors must step up says Warnock as Leeds hover above drop zone

Yorkshire Post 25/11/14
STEPHEN Warnock has vowed to use his experience to lift Leeds United’s young players in the aftermath of Saturday’s cruel 2-1 defeat at Blackburn Rovers.
A youthful Whites looked to be heading for an important victory after Souleymane Doukara’s strike had given Neil Redfearn’s side a 1-0 lead at the break. But a mix-up between ’keeper Marco Silvestri and Liam Cooper gifted Jordan Rhodes an equaliser and despite having Tom Cairney sent off Rhodes snatched victory with a late penalty awarded for Sam Byram’s foul on Luke Varney.
United are now two points above the drop zone ahead of Saturday’s visit of leaders Derby County but Warnock said: “We are a young team aside from myself and probably Mirco (Antenucci) and us and the rest of the lads around the place such as (Michael) Tongey and Stewie Taylor have got to try and lift the place and get them going. We are senior players and that is what senior players do. I am sure Redders will try and lift the lads this week and I am sure the senior boys will do that as well.”
Head coach Redfearn has just three days if he wishes to strengthen the club with a new loan signing with the emergency loan window closing on Thursday.

Blackburn 2 Leeds United 1: We paid penalty for our mistakes - Warnock

Yorkshire Evening Post 24/11/14
by Phil Hay
Stephen Warnock described an “angry” dressing room and said Leeds United were paying the price for “stupid mistakes” after a second-half blunder and a debatable penalty led to a 2-1 defeat at Blackburn Rovers.
Leeds were left to rue their own failings and the award of a contentious, 88th-minute spot-kick as Blackburn fought back from a goal down at Ewood Park to snatch a victory with only 10 men.
United opened the scoring in the first half through Souleymane Doukara and looked comfortable for the best part of an hour but Jordan Rhodes equalised when a collision between Leeds goalkeeper Marco Silvestri and defender Liam Cooper presented the striker with a tap-in.
Both Leeds head coach Neil Redfearn and left-back Warnock laid the blame for the 71st-minute concession at Silvestri’s door but Redfearn in particular was angered by the match-winning penalty which Rhodes converted two minutes from the end.
Referee Kevin Wright punished a challenge by Sam Byram on ex-Leeds striker Luke Varney, who Redfearn accused of “simulation”.
Warnock claimed later that the Cambridgeshire official was “waiting to give it.”
“There is a bit of anger with the stupid mistakes we made with their first goal,” Warnock said.
“It cost us the game because it put them on the front foot. Sometimes that drags you down. A few heads dropped and we should have reacted a lot better. We knew we had enough in us to score another goal.
“We need to cut out the errors because if they don’t score that first goal, we win the game. I’m confident of that.
“We all know what this league is like. You don’t have to be the best team in the league to get out of it. You have to be organised, resilient and well-drilled. At the moment we are to a certain point but we’re conceding silly goals.”
Silvestri was guilty of dithering over a straightforward clearance, eventually striking it against the body of a retreating Cooper and giving Rhodes clear sight of an empty net.
United’s Italian keeper – a leading performer for much of this season – was guilty of a similar mix-up with Giuseppe Bellusci during Leeds’ 3-1 defeat to Cardiff City at the start of the month.
Warnock said Silvestri should have given Cooper space to hack the ball away himself or advanced quickly from his goalline to avert any danger.
“Everyone knows he made a mistake and he knows it,” Warnock said. “I think we’ll probably speak about it (today). It needs addressing because it’s happened a couple of times now.
“He either stays on his line and makes Coops make a decision or, if he is coming, he comes all the way. It’s as simple as that.
“If he keeps a clean sheet and Coops goes off injured or whatever then so be it. That’s not being nasty to Coops. You’ve got to make a big decision and keep the ball out of the net.”
Warnock, however, said Leeds felt “robbed” after Wright’s decision to penalise Byram for his tackle on Varney. Blackburn had been reduced to 10 men eight minutes earlier, with Tom Cairney dismissed for a second bookable offence, and the penalty came 10 minutes after United striker Mirco Antenucci struck a post.
“Sam doesn’t believe it was a penalty,” Warnock said. “But in and around the box, you know that once you stick a leg out anything can happen. The referee was waiting to give it.
“The referee couldn’t wait to give it and that’s the way the game has gone. We feel a bit robbed.”
Leeds are 16th in the Championship with one win in 10 games, though Redfearn insisted afterwards that United had shown promising signs throughout Saturday’s match.
Warnock, pictured above, said: “We did very well. There were periods in the second half where the game got stretched and we were resilient. But once the goal goes in, it’s a different game suddenly.
“You always worry when you’re in a (league) position like ours so the quicker we get results, the quicker we start climbing the table. Then everyone will be happy.”
Warnock, meanwhile, paid tribute to United’s support after a crowd of 6,839 – the biggest Championship following of the term – made the trip to Lancashire on Saturday.
“We were probably the only club in the country, especially in the Championship, who would bring that many away fans,” the former Liverpool defender said. “It was incredible.”

Blackburn 2 Leeds United 1: Whites lament what might have been

Yorkshire Evening Post 24/11/14
by Phil Hay
There is nothing at Leeds United – no breathing space or margin for error – allowing the club to lose as they lost at Ewood Park. Neil Redfearn knows it and the road home from Blackburn on Saturday was long and quiet for him.
His team cannot capitulate like this. Not when they play as well as this. Not when they lead until the 71st minute, stifle one of the Championship’s better striker partnerships, finish the game with an extra man and benefit from an away crowd half the size of Clitheroe’s population.
There was a difference of opinion about all sorts of issues afterwards and while Gary Bower, the Blackburn Rovers manager, talked up his side and the penalty which won the game, Redfearn lamented a day when everything that could have gone wrong did.
“We deserved to win,” Redfearn said, and it seemed possible that Bowyer might privately agree that Leeds had earned more than a post mortem. Rovers’ strikers, Jordan Rhodes and Rudy Gestede, have 17 goals between them this season but Rhodes needed a hideous error and a late penalty to settle the match. Two finishes from him in the final 19 minutes made Souleymane Doukara’s earlier goal a distant, irrelevant memory.
Those wounds denied Redfearn the chance to dwell on pleasing subjects like Adryan’s class in the first half, the general attitude of his players or two centre-backs who faced down Rhodes and Gestede in open play. Instead, he focused on the confusion between Marco Silvestri and Liam Cooper that presented Rhodes with a tap-in and the penalty which the Scotland international buried two minutes from time.
Bowyer said the penalty – given for a challenge by Sam Byram on Luke Varney, the player who Brian McDermott bombed out of Elland Road last season – was a “stonewaller”. A few yards up the touchline, Redfearn saw a dive. “That’s never been a penalty,” United’s head coach said but the referee, Kevin Wright, thought otherwise.
Rhodes, who had missed his previous spot-kick at the same end of Ewood Park, tucked it safely to Silvestri’s left.
Blackburn were playing with 10 players at that staged, reduced in numbers by the sending off of Tom Cairney for a second yellow card on 80 minutes. Seconds before Cairney’s exit, with the scores level at 1-1, Mirco Antenucci had ghosted in behind Rovers’ defence and hammered a shot off the inside of a post. It was one of those days, and no mistake.
“Blackburn didn’t deserve anything,” Redfearn said. “They huffed and puffed in the second half but we dealt with them and we were the better side.
“We gave them the first goal and the second goal was a penalty which has never been a penalty. But there’s no point in me berating our luck.
“This is a young side and we’ve got to learn to get across the line because for 70 per cent of the game we were excellent. Blackburn got frustrated.” Rovers’ discomfort was evident from the moment Doukara turned home a corner on 33 minutes to the crucial juncture in the second half when Silvestri hacked a dithering clearance against the body of Cooper, leaving Rhodes to run the ball into an empty net.
The goalkeeper – one of Leeds’ better players this season – has been here before and very recently; involved in an identical blunder which confirmed Leeds’ defeat at Cardiff City three weeks ago.
Blackburn’s equaliser came during their firmest spell of pressure, and Redfearn may wonder in hindsight if earlier substitutions would have kept Leeds in a higher gear, but the concession was self-induced. Prior to it, Cairney had hit the crossbar with a curling shot from 20 yards and Ben Marshall’s low shot drew a scrambled save from Silvestri but their attacks in the first half were at arm’s length, a mile away from Rhodes and Gestede.
Leeds played in Redfearn’s fashion before half-time; passing religiously in open and tight spaces and squeezing Rovers until Bowyer’s defence gave in after the half-hour. Goalkeeper Jason Steele delayed the opening goal with a brilliant save, getting his fingertips to Adryan’s beautiful hit from the edge of the box, but Doukara was unmarked from a corner that followed and bundled the ball in at the far post.
There was class and precision in that period, and Redfearn duly highlighted it, but Leeds are two points above the Championship’s bottom three at the early stage of a hard month and in a league which, Blackpool aside, is dangerously tight.
Bowyer was chipper at full-time, talking about Blackburn’s “desire, commitment” and the usual attributes managers seek but Saturday was not a game where Leeds looked 10 points or 10 places worse than the team who hosted them.
That, all the same, is what the table shows.
Blackburn, as Redfearn said, grafted in the early part of the second half and gradually they saw more of the game; more space, more gaps, extra seconds in possession.
Silvestri parried away a rising volley from Rhodes before his horrible tangle with Cooper opened the floodgates but the onslaught provoked by the equaliser should have been stopped dead by Cairney’s dismissal.
The former Leeds academy player had been booked in the first half for a foul on Tommaso Bianchi and he left himself prone by flying into a tackle on Cooper. “I’ve no complaints with that at all,” Bowyer said. “The ref got it right.”
Redfearn looked immediately for a winner, quickly forgetting about a chance which Antenucci drove against a post two minutes before Cairney’s sending off.
Leeds broke quickly after Jason Pearce knocked Marshall’s cross off his own goalline and Adryan’s pass sent Antenucci clean through.
The Italian sized up Steele and beat him with a clean hit but watched the ball come back off the frame of the goal.
“It was a good chance and usually Mirco sticks them away,” Redfearn said.
“He was unlucky really because it’s hit the inside of the post and come out. To be honest, I’m more concerned about the mix-up for Blackburn’s first goal. At that point Blackburn were struggling to create anything.”
There was little coming their way in the closing minutes until the ball arrived at Varney’s feet 70 yards up the field.
The forward ran at Byram, tempted the right-back to poke a leg out and tumbled with all the theatrics he could muster.
It went without saying that the incident would cause a disagreement between Redfearn and Bowyer but Rhodes kept his head and sent Silvestri the wrong way, stroking the ball safely into the net.
Redfearn’s players looked rattled at the final whistle and an away crowd of almost 7,000 – a phenomenal following which proved once again that nothing Leeds do will ever kill the addiction – drifted off in bewildered disappointment.
“There’s that something about us,” Redfearn said. “Whether it’s youth or a lack of experience, we’ve got to be more ruthless. There won’t be many people in the stadium who didn’t think we were worth a point. And to be honest, I’d have been gutted with that.”

Leeds United: Varney in the dock over dive accusation

Yorkshire Evening Post 23/11/14
by Phil Hay
Neil Redfearn accused former Leeds United striker Luke Varney of diving to win the penalty which condemned the Elland Road club to a dramatic defeat away at Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.
Redfearn, United’s head coach, claimed Varney had conned referee Kevin Wright into penalising a tackle from Sam Byram and handing Blackburn the chance of a 2-1 victory at Ewood Park.
Byram and Varney – a player who left Leeds for Blackburn on a free transfer in July – came together inside United’s box on 88 minutes with the game level at 1-1 and Rovers down to 10 men after the sending off of Tom Cairney.
Jordan Rhodes converted the opportunity to earn Rovers an unlikely win with his second goal of the game.
Blackburn manager Gary Bowyer described the penalty as a “stonewaller” but an angry Redfearn criticised Varney for “simulation” as he reflected on an intensely frustrating visit to Lancashire.
“The penalty was a joke,” Redfearn said.
“It’s difficult for referees, I understand that, but these are the decisions they’ve got to get right. What should have happened was a free-kick to us and a yellow card for simulation.
“It has to be said that it was a poor decision. I’ve seen it and looked back at it again but straight away it looked like a dive. It’s not good for football.”
Bowyer defended Varney, saying: “From where I stood, and I haven’t seen it again, it looked like a stonewaller.”
The incident rounded off an infuriating afternoon for Redfearn, whose side opening the scoring with a 33rd-minute goal from Souleymane Doukara and looked to be on course for a first away win since September.
Blackburn created little until the 71st minute when a woeful misunderstanding between Leeds goalkeeper Marco Silvestri and centre-back Liam Cooper left Rhodes clear and free to knock the ball into an empty net.
Silvestri, who commited a similar error at Cardiff City earlier this month, dithered as a through ball approached his box and a late reaction saw his clearance rebound off Cooper and into the path of Rhodes.
Redfearn said: “The goalkeeper’s coming onto that and he should clear it. If you’re coming onto it you’re favourite to clear it.
“It happened before at Cardiff and he’s got to learn from that.”
Leeds were supported by the Championship’s biggest away following of the season on Saturday, some 6,839 in a total attendance of 21,432, and Doukara’s sixth goal of the season took advantage of a positive and aggressive performance in the first half.
Doukara steered home an Adryan corner which dropped him inside Blackburn’s box, giving Leeds the scent of a first away success since their 3-1 win at Bournemouth more than two months ago.
Blackburn’s fightback, however, left United two points above the Championship’s relegation places, in the thick of a group of 10 clubs between 14th place and 23rd who are separated by just four points.
United’s next game is at home to leaders Derby County on Saturday. Derby are three points clear after a 2-1 win over Watford at Vicarage Road.
“The performance was very good,” Redfearn said. “I’ve got to take that fact into the next game. It’s building blocks for us at the moment and we’re young. We are prone to mistakes.
“If you look back through the season we’ve been accused of doing well in the first half and then going off it in the second but for most of this game we were good and we passed the ball really well.
“If we want to be successful and climb the table then we’ve got to get across the line but We defended as a team, we passed the ball, we countered and we played the ball out of tight situations.
“The result I’m disappointed with.”

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Blackburn Rovers v Leeds United: Redfearn rues late penalty

Yorkshire Evening Post 22/11/14
BITTERLY-DISAPPOINTED Leeds United head coach Neil Redfearn was left to rue a ‘poor decision’ by referee Kevin Wright in awarding Blackburn Rovers a controversial late penalty as the Whites dramatically went down 2-1 at Ewood Park.
Leeds were good value for a first-half lead thanks to Souleymane Doukara’s seventh goal of the season in the 33rd minute, only for two cheap concessions to turn the tables in front of almost 7,000 stunned travelling supporters.
A crazy concession on 71 minutes saw Rovers draw level when Marco Silvestri provided a horror moment in failing to make a routine clearance when racing out of goal, with Jordan Rhodes tucking the ball into an empty net.
Then, two minutes from time, Rovers, down to ten men when ex-Leeds junior Tom Cairney was dismissed following his second caution on 82 minutes, were awarded a penalty after ex-Whites striker Luke Varney went down in the box after what looked like minimal contact from Sam Byram.
Rhodes coolly sent Silvestri the wrong way for his second goal of the game and secure the Lancastrians an unlikely win.
Redfearn rued: “We deserved to win and I don’t think Blackburn deserved anything. We gave them the first goal and the second was never a penalty. Referees have to get these things right.
“It was a poor decision. At the time, it looked like a dive and I have seen the DVD and it’s not good for football.”
Despite being furious with the penalty award, Redfearn admitted Leeds were architects of their own downfall for the equaliser 19 minutes from time, when Silvestri produced a horror moment akin to the game at Cardiff when failed to clear when racing out and bundling into Liam Cooper.
Redfearn said: “I was very concerned about the mix-up for the first goal. It happened at Cardiff.
“It should have been managing the game for Blackburn and making it difficult for them. It’s part of the learning process for us.”
Redfearn took solace from the visitors’ performance for seventy minutes in front of the biggest travelling support in the Championship this season and despite the crushing nature of the defeat, he insists that he won’t give the chance for players heads to be down after the demoralising nature of the loss.
He added: “You look at the supporters and the way they got behind us and the way they enjoyed what happened. It was only that last little bit that has let everything down.
“But that was the most important bit. And we have got to get across the line, if we are to be successful and win things and get back in the Premier League, which we do. These things are happen.
“I won’t give them chance to get down and they are not allowed to get down because at the end of the day, they are in a privileged position and have got to pick themselves up and battle and fight and play good football against Derby and go and get a good result and that’s what we have got to do.”

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Phil Hay: Thorp Arch not to blame for Leeds United’s ills

Yorkshire Evening post 22/11/14
Leeds United’s training ground has its detractors, but since it opened has produced its fair share of players – and financial income – for the Elland Road club.
The good news for Kalvin Phillips this week wasn’t the prospect of a day trip to Blackburn Rovers. It was the realisation that Leeds United are starting to think of him in that context. This is how is goes for graduates at Thorp Arch: a sniff, a taste and then the watershed.
On occasions Leeds dangle the carrot without offering an immediate chance to bite. Alex Purver, an 18-year-old midfielder, travelled to Birmingham City in September but did not make the bench and has not made his debut. Likewise, the intention with Phillips is to open his eyes, not to drown him at the deep end against an adept Championship club. In the end Leeds chose not to take him to Blackburn but his chance will come. The point is that he and others are on the doorstep. The line of academy players edging into the party shows no sign of ending.
It will be longer by default on the basis that Neil Redfearn is United’s head coach. He knows the kids, he’s loyal to them and he more than anyone will feel a duty to test their potential. You would call him a partial judge were it not for the fact that the players he puts forward keep shaking the ground. The past month has been Alex Mowatt’s best without exception. He’s the same Alex Mowatt whose face didn’t fit in David Hockaday’s light brigade.
There were other notable achievements during the international break. Eric Grimes, United’s 19-year-old goalkeeper, made his debut for the Republic of Ireland’s Under-21s. Eoghan Stokes, a teenage striker, scored for the Republic’s Under-19s in a European Championship qualifier against Malta. They all want what Mowatt, Lewis Cook and Sam Byram have got – domestic exposure and first-team appearances – but in terms of focus, Thorp Arch has become a broad church. Most of Leeds’ young professionals are finding a way of amounting to something.
All of which makes you question whether Thorp Arch deserves to be under threat. United’s training ground is under threat and has been since Massimo Cellino bought the club in April. He dislikes the complex and he has his reasons. The lease on the training ground is punitive and makes no financial sense. The location of Thorp Arch, 15 miles north of the centre of Leeds, is prohibitive for families who lack the means to transport youngsters. Back in the day, Fabian Delph needed three buses to reach the academy, albeit from his home in Bradford.
It strikes Cellino as an unlucky place too, though that’s as maybe. The facility as it stands was largely completed in 2002, the point when so much began to go wrong, but the brainchild of Howard Wilkinson made United the progressive club they were for several years before the collapse. Blaming Thorp Arch then was like blaming Thorp Arch now. The cost of rent aside, it’s the last of the problems if it even classes as a problem at all.
In an interview with the YEP before the international break, Cellino touched on the subject of building a new training ground. Since his takeover United have looked for suitable pieces of land in the centre of Leeds and have spoken to the city council about the many issues involved. Money is bigger than most. Southampton’s new academy cost £30m to build and Brighton are paying a similar amount for theirs. That consideration is secondary to discussions about how Leeds might extricate themselves from lease at Thorp Arch which runs until 2029 and currently costs £600,000 a year.
Youth development comes into the equation too. United’s academy has been under severe pressure for years, constrained by falling budgets, but something is working. Cellino was asked whether quitting Thorp Arch might weaken a decent production line. “The academy could do better,” he replied. Of course it could. By definition, a category-two academy could be better. But gaining a superior classification is, again, as much about money as it is a case of improving productivity.
The Elite Player Performance Plan (EPPP) is already so ingrained in English football that Leeds cannot attempt to work outside it. Their reputation, their attractiveness and their output will be maximised by acquiring category one status. But EPPP is not an Ofsted report. It’s not purely an analysis of working practices or coaching ability.
Category One academies need an operational budget of at least £2.5m. They need a minimum of 18 full-time staff and a certain standard of facilities. Last season, United’s bid for category two status was disrupted by a delay in installing a 3G astroturf pitch at Thorp Arch. The project was one of many things that ran out of cash towards the end of Gulf Finance House’s ownership. Cellino effectively footed the bill and the club passed the EPPP audit but that example demonstrates the tight framework that academies work within. Left to its own devices, United’s seems to cover the bases. That’s proven by the players who are streaming out of it. Something will give with Thorp Arch eventually. Cellino, quite reasonably, is bewildered by an agreement where Leeds pay rent through the nose forever and a day (or until 2029). But there’s risk involved with decamping at haste, whatever the motivation. Certain things have let Leeds down. Thorp Arch isn’t one of them.

**********
Gulf Finance House, Leeds United’s former owner and existing minority shareholder, rebranded itself on Monday. The Bahraini bank is now called GFH. That should make the world of difference.
Meanwhile, over in Dubai, GFH Capital – the private equity arm which arranged GFH’s takeover of Leeds in 2012 – was undergoing a more bizarre rebranding of its own. On Tuesday morning the company’s website began redirecting Internet users towards a newspaper report alleging that GFH’s buy-out of United was paid for in part by money from Iran, potentially in breach of UN sanctions. At the time of publication, GFH denied the suggestion and said it was “deeply defamatory.”
Later that day the website changed tack and instead displayed a tweet referring to unflattering reports about Esam Janahi, the main man at GFH when the bank bought Leeds.
By Wednesday morning a new link had appeared – this time showing the homepage of Naftiran Intertrade Company, a Swiss-based subsidiary of the National Iranian Oil Company. There was also a redirection to the complaints section of the Dubai Financial Services Authority’s website. GFH Capital was asked to comment on the significance of it all and explain what was happening with its homepage. Before a reply came, GFH Capital’s twitter feed joined in the fun yesterday by tweeting and retweeting messages openly attacking the company. Contact details for GFH employees Hisham Alrayes and Jinesh Patel were also published.
The domain name for GFH Capital’s website is controlled by David Haigh, the firm’s former deputy chief executive and United’s one-time managing director.
Haigh is presently under arrest in a Dubai police station, as he has been since May 18 when authorities there locked him up over allegations of financial wrongdoing made against him by GFH. As has been widely reported, the bank alleges that Haigh falsified invoices during his time as GFH Capital’s deputy CEO and defrauded the company of more than £3m.
Haigh denies the claims and has not been charged with any criminal offence, despite his long incarceration.
He is making counter-claims against GFH and says his arrest was designed to stop him levelling accusations of wrongdoing at the bank. Tuesday marked six months to the day since Haigh was detained. At the same time as GFH Capital’s website began going haywire, the 37-year-old’s Twitter account tweeted: “Everything starting to fall into place about the real wrongdoing and wrongdoers. Reports made to law enforcements agencies.”
That message was followed by an excerpt of the poem ‘Invictus’, written by William Ernest Henley as he recovered from the amputation of one foot following the onset of tuberculosis.
Invictus is best known as the poem read by Nelson Mandela to fellow inmates during his years of imprisonment on Robben Island.
Weirder and weirder.

Leeds United: Sharp is raring to go – Redders

Yorkshire Evening Post 22/11/14
Neil Redfearn believes Billy Sharp is ready to get his Leeds United career going after a quiet start to life at Elland Road.
United’s head coach said Sharp was looking fit and in-form following his recent return from a thigh injury and expects him and Steve Morison to begin putting pressure on the starting places held by Souleymane Doukara and Mirco Antenucci.
Sharp was one of United’s major summer signings and he scored a dramatic winner against Middlesbrough on his debut at Elland Road in August. But the 28-year-old has failed to find the net since then and last started a league game two months ago.
Morison has been limited to just two starts.
Redfearn said: “To be fair to Antenucci and Doukara, to say they’ve come from overseas and this is their first experience of the Championship, they’ve given a good account of themselves. They’ve put themselves in a good position.
“But that’s not to say there isn’t competition. Billy’s a proven striker and Steve’s a proven striker and they’ve done it the right way in training, They’re competing and that’s what I want.”

Ex-Leeds United owner GFH target of remarkable Twitter attack

Yorkshire Evening Post 21/11/14
by Phil Hay
Gulf Finance House, the ex-owner of Leeds United, appears to be the target of a remarkable attack in which contact details of senior bank officials have been published online by its own private equity firm.
A feed run on behalf of GFH Capital, the Dubai-based arm of GFH which bought Leeds in 2012, began attacking the bank earlier today in a series of rogue tweets aimed at the bank and leading employees.
The development came after a week in which GFH Capital’s official website began displaying a newspaper report alleging financial wrongdoing by the bank during its takeover of United two years ago, an accusation GFH denies.
Tweets on GFH Capital’s feed this afternoon have now published what it claims are private phone numbers of Hisham Alrayes and Jinesh Patel.
The account, which had been dormant since November 2012, began posting the extraordinary messages around lunchtime.
Alrayes is chief executive of GFH and was a board member at Elland Road until he resigned from that post in September 2013.
Patel is GFH Capital’s chief executive officer, a job he took up earlier this year. He holds a different role to Salem Patel, an existing Leeds director and GFH’s current head of investment management.
GFH owned Leeds for 14 turbulent months before finally selling a majority share in the club to Massimo Cellino in February.
The Bahraini investment bank continues to hold a 10 per cent stake and manages a minority shareholding of 25 per cent.
In a statement, GFH denied that the online sites had been hacked and blamed “associates” of former GFH Capital CEO and ex-United managing director David Haigh for the breaches.
“We can confirm that there has been no compromise of our corporate computer systems,” the statement read.
“We have now established that the ex-deputy CEO of GFH Capital, David Haigh, retained administrative rights over these web accounts after his employment ended and we believe that Mr Haigh, through his associates, is responsible for these malicious attacks on our web presence.
“We are taking urgent action to recover these web accounts and will pursue legal action against those that have perpetrated and assisted in these malicious acts while spreading false accusations and misinformation.”
GFH is currently involved in a bitter legal dispute with Haigh.
The 37-year-old was arrested in Dubai in May after GFH accused him of misappropriating more than £3m of funds during his time as GFH Capital’s CEO.
Haigh, who denies the claims and says he has evidence of wrongdoing by others at GFH, has been imprisoned without charge for the past six months.
He resigned from his post at GFH Capital in February but flew out to the Middle East on May 18 to discuss the offer of a new job from the firm. Haigh was arrested by local police shortly after arriving at the company’s offices.
Today’s tweets included what appeared to be text messages from Alrayes ordering the sacking of former Leeds manager Brian McDermott in January.
GFH is understood to have called for McDermott’s dismissal at half-time of a 6-0 defeat to Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough on January 11.
Haigh - the only Leeds board member present at the game - refused to carry out the order and McDermott continued in his post.
Despite residing in a Dubai Police Station, Haigh’s twitter account has directed a series of critical messages at GFH this week.
One of them, which was posted on Tuesday, read: “Everything starting to fall into place about the real wrongdoing and wrongdoers. Reports made to law enforcements agencies.”