Friday, December 31, 2004

Leeds United Football Club - United Move For Blake

United Move For Blake
United boss Kevin Blackwell has strengthened his squad ahead of the New Year by signing Leicester striker Nathan Blake on a month's loan.

Blake, 32, has been drafted in as a direct replacement for the injured Brian Deane who faces up to six weeks out of action after damaging his shoulder.

The 29-times capped Welsh international has been played as a target man throughout his career and his arrival will enable Blackwell to stick with the system that has seen Leeds win the last two games and go unbeaten in four.

Blake goes straight into the squad for the New Year's Day game against Crewe Alexandra and has been given squad number 21. Leeds are in discussion with Leicester to see if they will allow him to play in the FA Cup, with his his loan spell set to take in the fourth round of the competition should United get past Birmingham. His last league game would be against Derby County at Pride Park.

The forward has made just five starts this season for the Foxes, his last one being earlier this month, and has made ten other appearances as a substitute.

Blake started his career as a trainee at Chelsea but never played a first team game for them before moving to home town Cardiff, where he made 164 appearances.

Moves followed to Sheffield United, where he scored an impressive 34 goals from 55 starts, then Bolton and after thee years there a £4.25m move to Blackburn Rovers. He left Ewood Park for Wolverhampton Wanderers in September 2001 but became a free agent at the end of last season.

Sunderland and West Ham both chased his signature in the summer before he opted to join Leicester on a one-year deal.

Meanwhile, loan signing John Oster has returned to Sunderland this morning after the club ruled he had breached the club's code of conduct.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Leeds United Football Club - Deane Set For Scan

Deane Set For Scan

Related Links Brian DeaneUnited striker Brian Deane will go for a scan on his shoulder today amidst fears that the striker may be out for up to a month.

Deane was forced to come off against Plymouth Argyle at half-time after damaging his shoulder minutes before the break with and is a major concern for boss Kevin Blackwell with the fear being that he dislocated it.

"We had to take Deano off at half-time and it now looks as if we could be missing him for a few weeks," said Blackwell.

"We'll have to x-ray it today before we know how just bad it is.

Deane has been in superb form in recent games, scoring in the win over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light and generally putting in spritely performances that defy his age.

Blackwell knows he will have to face up to Deano's loss if his worst fears are confirmed.

"Deano's been terrific for me, I think people forget that he's 36 going on 37 because he's kept himself in great shape.

"People questioned it when I brought him back to the club, but I had a specific role in mind and I had wanted to bring in another striker but things didn't happen that way. So he's had to step in and do more than both of us probably expected and he's given us great service this season."
Leeds United Football Club - United Reject Carson Bid

United Reject Carson Bid

Related Links Scott CarsonLeeds United have re-iterated their desire to keep hold of Scott Carson after today rejecting an offer for the highly rated keeper from a Premiership club.

United are not prepared to name the club involved, but recent media speculation has linked the 19-year-old with both Liverpool and Chelsea.

The Cumbrian born stopper is out of contract in the summer and Leeds began negotiations with him and his representative before Christmas to try and secure his long term future at Elland Road, but their initial offer was rejected.

Leeds have returned though with an improved offer for Scott and are hopeful both sides can come to an agreement.

Speaking for the Leeds United board, Bryan Morris said:

"An offer has been made for Scott Carson by a Premiership side."

"This offer has been turned down and Leeds United is speaking to Scott's agent today in order to offer a new deal for him to remain at the club."

Should Scott turn down the latest offer and choose to leave in the summer, he would not be a Bosman free transfer as that only applies to players over the age of 24. Instead a fee would be set by tribunal.

United boss Kevin Blackwell is desperate to keep hold of Carson, who he sees as a star of the future.

"Scott is having to make a difficult decision at this moment in time," he said.

"I leave contracts to the board but Scott is exactly the sort of player this club should be looking to keep hold of. He can become a great keeper with Leeds United, he does not need to go anywhere because hopefully sooner rather than later we will be back in the Premiership.

"Neil Sullivan's arrival has been great for Scott because he has learnt so much from him and he's still got a lot he can learn. I hope he can continue that because there's no doubt he can be a great keeper."

Carson's advisor is aware of the interest in his player, saying:

"Of course it's flattering for Scott to be linked to such a club as they are at the moment.

"Amongst all the other leading Premiership clubs that have also supposedly expressed interest in Scott - that is flattering.

"And, of course, you have the likes of Wigan who have also had an outstanding season. You have to view each one [club] on its merits," he added to Skysports.Com.
Yorkshire Post Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More

Healy on target to end year on a highLeeds United 2
Plymouth Argyle 1
Richard Sutcliffe
DAVID HEALY ended what can otherwise only be described as an 'Annus Horribilis' for Leeds United with a spectacular 35-yard winner to seal a second double of the season.
It has been a wretched 2004 for everyone at Elland Road with the year ending as it began – United facing an uncertain future due to their precarious financial position. The past 12 months have also seen Leeds surrender their Premiership status, wave goodbye to the last of the star players that reached the Champions League semi-finals, as well as sell their ground and training ground to stave off possible meltdown.
United did, however, round off 2004 with an important victory over Plymouth to chalk up a back-to-back wins for only the third time in 12 months. Kevin Blackwell's side may have been slightly fortunate to take the points against a visiting side who played the better football but in Healy United have unearthed a true gem.
He may not have had his best 90 minutes in a Leeds shirt – though the sponsors did name the Northern Ireland international as man of the match.
But when it mattered, Healy duly delivered. It was his drilled cross from the left flank just 49 seconds into the second half that Plymouth defender Peter Gilbert turned into his own net for the opening goal.
Then, with just a minute remaining and with Leeds fans anxiously waiting for the final whistle Healy struck with a contender for 'goal of the season'. With Argyle defender Matthias Doumbe playing him onside, Healy collected a long clearance from the United defence midway inside the visitors' half. He looked up, saw goalkeeper Rowain Larrieu six yards off his line and unleashed an unstoppable shot from 35 yards that flew into the net.
Manager Blackwell is udelighted with Healy and said: "I still cannot believe I got him here in the first place. I thought that some Premiership club would have come in. That goal was Premiership finishing, he has a real eye for a goal."
Healy has recently been used on the left of Blackwell's preferred 4-3-3 formation that switches to 4-5-1 when defending. But the Leeds manager could be tempted to move Healy up front when Crewe visit Elland Road on New Year's Day in place of Brian Deane, who came off with a suspected dislocated shoulder and could be out for a month.
There is no doubt Leeds will have to improve hugely on this showing against in-form Crewe with Plymouth's midfield allowed far too much freedom to dominate for lengthy periods.
Argyle did pull a goal back five minutes into stoppage time through Steve Crawford to cause a few anxious looks at watches by many in the season's best crowd of 34,496. But Leeds held on to add Plymouth to Preston on the list of sides they have done the double over this season.
Blackwell said: "That is the worse we have played in nine or 10 games and I said to the players at half time 'I am just glad it is still 0-0'. We have had so much bad luck this season, is was nice to receive some good fortune at last."
Maybe United's fortunes have bottomed out and 2005 will turn out to be the club's 'Annus Mirabilis' when the sharp decline of recent years is finally halted.
Leeds United: Sullivan; Kelly, Butler, Kilgallon, Richardson (Carlisle 80); Wright, Gregan, Pugh; Lennon, Deane (Joachim 46), Healy.
Plymouth Argyle: Larrieu; Connolly, Doumbe, Wotton, Gilbert; Hodges; Norris, Adams (Evans 66), Gudjonsson, Capaldi (Friio 52); Keith (Crawford 78).
Referee: G Salisbury (Lancashire).

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Leeds United Football Club - Matchreport Leeds United vs Plymouth Argyle

Leeds 2 Plymouth 1
Team news
United boss Kevin Blackwell made just the one change to his side following the 3-2 win over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light on Boxing Day.
Midfielder Sean Gregan returns from suspension to replace stand-in Matthew Spring in the centre, which meant Aaron Lennon, who scored on his full league debut on Sunday, kept his place in the starting XI.
The Match
Leeds began the game with all the fresh confidence that their win on Boxing Day had given them, but they quickly found that Plymouth were not going to afford them as much space as Sunderland had, and they were going to have to battle a little harder to break down the visitors.
Brian Deane tried a spectacular overhead kick inside the area in the first minute of the game but in a crowded penalty area his shot was blocked and Plymouth escaped that and another chance for the Whites in the opening minutes of the game.
Sean Gregan had just returned from suspension for this game after picking up five yellow cards, and he was lucky to escape a booking for a foul on Bjarni Gudjonsson early on that gave the visitors a free-kick in a dangerous position. Fortunately nothing came of it.
Neil Sullivan had been given nothing to do until the 20th minute when he safely plucked a deflected shot from David Norris out of the air.
Leeds were looking to make the most of Aaron Lennon's pace and trickery down the flanks, and Frazer Richardson's ball midway though the half appeared to have created just the opening they wanted, but Plymouth centre-back Matthias Doumbe got back and covered well.
Five minutes later Doumbe hooked a flick on goalwards for the visitors but Sullivan held onto the ball with a clean pair of hands.
Just before the half hour mark Leeds made a concerted effort to try and snatch the lead. Brian Deane caused havoc inside the area as he collided with the Plymouth keeper, Lennon couldn't take advantage of the loose ball and then eventually Kelly's cross found David Healy inside the area but the striker lost control and couldn't get a shot away to trouble the visitors goal.
Despite their defensive approach, Plymouth were still able to get in United's penalty area and cause problems. Gary Kelly did well to dispossess Marino Keith with a well timed tackle five minutes before half-time.
Lennon was a delight to watch with the ball at his feet and with just two minutes to go to the break captivated the Elland Road crowd with a display that saw him round one defender and turn another one inside out before a third Plymouth man booted the ball clear into row Z.

Brian Deane had taken a clattering just before half time and Leeds decided not to risk him after the break, bringing Julian Joachim on in his place.
Almost straight from kick-off in the second half Leeds got the breakthrough.
Frazer Richardson forced the Plymouth defence to back off with his attacking run, he played a short pass to Danny Pugh which was knocked on to David Healy and the striker flashed a powerful ball across the face of the area where it was haplessly bundled into his own net by Argyle left-back Peter Gilbert.
Kevin Blackwell had remarked many times before that he would just like a goal to go in off a player's backside or an own goal for once, and he finally had his lucky break.
Leeds almost gave the lead away as easily as they had been earned it a few minutes later when sub David Friio broke into the area but somehow Frazer Richardson wrestled the ball off him and Gudjonsson to clear the danger. Sean Gregan picked up the booking he had looked destined to collect with a foul on Friio.
Plymouth's first booking in the game came on 62 minutes when Paul Connolly sent Lennon clattering to the ground with a clumsy challenge, and from the free-kick David Healy sent his curling shot just a yard the wrong side of the left hand post.
Connolly could have equalised for Plymouth a few minutes later but volleyed his shot wide at the far post.
Leeds looked certain to celebrate their second on 70 minutes when Wright broke clear and beat the keeper, but his shot hit the foot of the left hand post and as has been typical of the season as a whole, it naturally bounced straight back out again.
United continued to press hard for another goal, desperate not to be pegged back at the last like they were a few weeks ago against Millwall, and when Pugh crossed into the centre after a great run down the left, the ball was only just cleared away before it reached Healy on the edge of the six-yard box.
Blackwell made a defensive change just before the end when he took Frazer Richardson off and brought Clarke Carlisle on, his first action since losing his place due to injury four games ago.

United were forced to pull men back themselves in the last few minutes of the game as Plymouth made a late attempt to rescue something from the game, whilst at the other end Healy and Joachim toiled to get the second goal for Leeds.
The killer goal finally came just a minute from the end of normal time when Healy won the ball 35-yards out from goal, spotted the keeper well off his line and guided his strike with lazer precision into the back of the net, comfortably chipping the keeper.

It was just the kind of goal Leeds fans have been longing to see from the Northern Ireland international and more importantly it secured all three points.
Plymouth did give their fans a goal to cheer as they contemplated the 300 mile trip back to Devon, sub Steve Crawford bundling home the ball just before the final whistle went.
LEEDS SUSPEND OSTER AND McMASTER: Sporting Life - Football | Transfer News, Live Scores, Barclays Premiership, SPL, Championship, European News, Fixtures, Results, Tables

LEEDS SUSPEND OSTER AND McMASTER
Leeds United have suspended John Oster and Jamie McMaster following alleged breaches of club discipline.
The pair were suspended by boss Kevin Blackwell on Christmas Eve following an incident at the club's official festive party last week.
Blackwell said the duo were set for showdown talks on Friday.
"We have suspended them pending further enquiries," he told the Yorkshire Evening Post. "We are conducting our own internal investigation. Until that is concluded and we have met with the players again there is nothing further I can say."
Oster, who is on loan from Sunderland, was arrested outside a Durham nightclub two weeks ago. He was released without charge but fined by Leeds and warned about his future conduct.
It is thought Leeds will take a hard-line stance when 26-year-old Oster and McMaster return to the club to learn their fate on Friday.
Following Oster's nightclub incident Blackwell stressed he would not tolerate off-field trouble.
Leeds could opt to end Oster's loan arrangement while 22-year-old McMaster could face a substantial fine and a warning about his future conduct.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Sport

Blackwell pride bolstered by young Leeds
Sunderland 2 - Leeds United 3
By Gary Emmerson
27 December 2004


Faced with the prospect of becoming the manager of the worst-ever Leeds United side, Kevin Blackwell received a late Christmas gift when his mix-and-match side earned three points from their Boxing Day bout with promotion-chasing Sunderland.

On a day when Sunderland fans held a traditional end-of-year minute's silence to mark the passing of past managers and players, including the legendary 1973 FA Cup-winning manager Bob Stokoe, Leeds exerted some kind of revenge for that Wembley defeat some 31 years ago.

This, however, is a vastly different Leeds to the side beaten by Stokoe's underdogs and Blackwell has a job on his hands restoring order to Elland Road after the club went into free-fall towards potential financial ruin. But Blackwell and his young team of fighters ensured they headed down the A1 with three points in the bag.

Sunderland, and their manager Mick McCarthy, have already come through dire times following the club's exit from the top-flight two years ago. They could have gone into the automatic promotion places with a win, but an impressive display from Leeds earned the Yorkshiremen the points.

"To come to this place and win is very encouraging," said Blackwell, who fielded seven players under the age of 20 in his 16 to face Sunderland. "We're going through a transformation and the squad is being tested to the limit. I'm very proud." The young winger Aaron Lennon delivered the first blow to Sunderland's hopes when he curled home a shot from 16 yards out in the 30th minute after David Healy had caused panic among the rearguard of the home side.

Three minutes before the break Sunderland were back on level terms. Dean Whitehead burst into the penalty area and was felled by the makeshift full-back Frazer Richardson. The midfielder Liam Lawrence stroked home the spot-kick.

The Sunderland forward Chris Brown missed two excellent chances eight minutes after the break when, after a neat turn 30 yards from goal, Neal Sullivan palmed his stinging shot wide before he headed the resulting Lawrence corner over.

Leeds punished the home side's failings in the 62nd minute when Brian Deane powered home a trademark header from an inch-perfect cross from Healy, just seconds after Sunderland thought they had averted the threat of a Matthew Spring run.

The home favourite Julio Arca struck the outside of the Leeds post and the substitute Stephen Elliott turned a shot into the arms of Sullivan before Julian Joachim landed the killer blow five minutes from time, finishing off a free-flowing Leeds move.

Danny Pugh went close in the final minutes for Leeds before Arca sparked a frantic injury-time spell when he curled home a free-kick in stoppage time. But Sunderland's chance to capitalise on defeats for Wigan and Ipswich was squandered.

"I'm disappointed with the goals we conceded," McCarthy said. "The league is concertina-ed up again and maybe it is a wake-up call for all of us."

Goals: Lennon (0-1); Lawrence (1-1); Deane (1-2); Joachim (1-3); Arca (2-3).

Sunderland (4-4-2) Myhre; Wright, Breen, Caldwell, McCartney; Lawrence (Stewart, 81), Whitehead, Robinson, Arca; Brown, Bridges (Elliott, 60). Substitutes not used: Alnwick (gk), Whitley, N Collins.

Leeds United (4-4-2) Sullivan; Kelly, Butler, Kilgallon, Richardson; Lennon (Joachim, 79), Spring, Wright, Pugh; Deane (Ricketts, 86), Healy (Woods, 90). Substitutes not used: Carson (gk), Carlisle.

Referee: R Beeby (Northamptonshire).

Booked: Leeds: Kelly, Butler.

Man of the match: Healy.

Attendance: 43,253.
Telegraph | Sport | Lennon opens account to help Leeds defy odds

Lennon opens account to help Leeds defy odds
By Rob Stewart
(Filed: 27/12/2004)


Match Details



Sunderland (1) 2 Leeds United (1) 3

Leeds managed to lend some weight to Sunderland manager Mick McCarthy's theory that all the teams in the Championship are "as bad as each other" by securing a win that made a mockery of either side's current ranking.

The visiting team had begun proceedings in 20th place in the Championship due to Brighton's lunchtime victory but defied the odds to humble opponents who wasted the chance to go top of the table for the first time since relegation from the Premiership.

"I say, tongue in cheek, that we're all as bad as each other and maybe the results this weekend have highlighted that," said McCarthy. "There's nobody that good that they're going to keep winning games all season.''

After David Healy had spurned two decent opportunities for Leeds, he set up Aaron Lennon to put his hometown team ahead after a fine run that allowed the youngster to curl the ball past Thomas Myhre from just inside the penalty area. It was Lennon's first goal for Leeds.

Back came Sunderland and they equalised 13 minutes later through Liam Lawrence who sent Neil Sullivan the wrong way with a penalty kick after Matthew Spring fouled Dean Whitehead.

After the break, Sunderland looked on course for their ninth home victory of the season and Chris Brown saw a shot pushed wide by Sullivan before his header flashed just over seconds later.

It prompted the Sunderland fans in the 43,253 crowd – the second highest attendance of the day in England - to taunt their rivals with "Going down, going down".

They were silenced by Brian Deane's 61st-minute goal which saw Spring surge down the left wing before Healy delivered an inch-perfect cross. It allowed Deane to brush aside George McCartney and Myhre could only divert his header on to the underside of the bar.

Back came Sunderland again and in the 77th-minute Julio Arca almost equalised but his shot crashed against Sullivan's near post before substitute Stephen Elliott side-footed George McCartney's cross straight at the goalkeeper.

After Myhre had done well to tip away Healy's shot, another substitute, Julian Joachim, thumped Jermaine Wright's low cross past the Norwegian after 85 minutes.

Thousand of Sunderland fans had already vacated their seats when Julio Arca curled in a free kick past Sullivan in stoppage time.

"We showed steely determination and clinical finishing," said Leeds manager Kevin Blackwell.

Match Details
Sunderland (4-4-2): Myhre; Wright, Breen, Caldwell, McCartney; Lawrence (Stewart 81), Whitehead, Robinson, Arca; Bridges (Elliott 60), Brown. Subs: Alnwick (g), N Collins, Whitley. Goals: Lawrence (43 pen), Arca (90).

Leeds (4-5-1): Sullivan; Kelly, Butler, Kilgallon, Richardson; Lennon (Joachim 79), Spring, Wright, Pugh, Healy (Woods 90); Deane (Ricketts 86). Subs: Carson (g), Carlisle. Goals: Lennon (30), Deane (61), Joachim (85). Booked: Kelly, Butler.

Referee: R Beeby (Northants).


Sunday, December 26, 2004

Leeds United Football Club - Matchreport Sunderland vs Leeds United

Sunderland 2 Leeds 3
Team News:

Leeds boss Kevin Blackwell was forced into making changes due to suspensions and with John Oster being refused permission to play against his parent club.

Midfielders Sean Gregan and Simon Walton were both serving one match bans which gave Matthew Spring the chance to make only his second league start of the season, whilst Aaron Lennon also made a rare start.

The Match

Sunderland started the game with real gusto, looking desperate for the early goal, but soon dropped the tempo which was largely thanks to the experience of some of United's older heads making sure the game was slowed down.

The home side won two early free-kicks but Leeds dealt with them comfortably, especially with Brian Deane's height coming in handy whilst acting as a makeshift defender.

The Black Cats right winger Liam Lawrence looked a real live wire and he was going to take some extra attention to be kept under control. He had a go with a long drive on ten minutes that did not trouble Sullivan.

Suspensions had given Aaron Lennon his chance and the teenager appeared to be ready to make the most of it. He was bright to start with, taking on men and involved in everything Leeds did well in the early stages.

He jinxed his way down the right wing and managed to send his cross into a dangerous position in the box but it was headed behind before David Healy could get there.

Lennon was also involved in United's first real break opportunity that came after 18 minutes, and if only the finish from Healy had matched the build up play.

Matthew Spring cleared the ball from the right back position straight to the path of Lennon whose first touch pass allowed Deane to thread the ball through for Healy to run onto, but the shot was straight into the body of Thomas Myhre in the Sunderland goal.

Gary Kelly then became the first man booked for a foul on Julio Arca just outside the area. Lawrence curled the free-kick just wide but Leeds will have remembered that the referee, Richard Beeby, sent two of their number off against Brighton at the Withdean.

This was a game many had not fancied Leeds to get anything out of, but that's exaclty what motivates Leeds, as it proved.

Just before the half hour mark it was Lennon who came good for Leeds as they took the lead against the run of play.

The ball had broken for Healy to have the shot but he was blocked out of it and it fell kindly to Lennon and he could not have finished it better, curling it home with his left foot past the despairing dive of Mhyre.

Leeds grew more confident after the goal and had a few more balls bounced their way they would have had more clear cut opportunites.

It was skipper Paul Butler's first return to the Stadium of Light after leaving for Wolves four and a half years ago, and five minutes before the break he picked up a yellow card with another foul on Arca.

Just afterwards Sunderland were gifted the opportunity to restore parity when Spring was judged to have held down Dean Whitehead inside the area and the referee pointed to the penalty spot straight away.

The same player stepped up to the mark and sent Sullivan the wrong way, comfortably putting it into the far corner of the net and suddenly Leeds had it all to do again.

No changes at the break for either side, it was Leeds who appeared the more confident as they set off in search of a second goal.

Eight minutes into the half though it was Sunderland who had the first real chance. Chris Brown saw his shot palmed clear by Sullivan at the expense of a corner from which former United loan signing Steven Caldwell missed the opportunity to hurt his former club as he sent his header over the top.

Just before the hour mark Matt Kilgallon produced a great tackle to prevent Lawrence from going through on goal but it came at a price as the young defender injured himself in the process, fortunately though he was albe to walk it off and returned to the action after a few minutes treatment.

Right on the hour mark though Leeds regained the lead and it was thanks to perserverence from Matthew Spring and David Healy down the left that they got the second goal.

Spring battled hard to keep possession of the ball down by the Sunderland byline, he then simply passed it to Healy behind him and he delivered an inch perfect cross for Brian Deane to head. The keeper got hands to the ball but could only palm it onto the underside of the bar and it bounced down and in.

Leeds kept coming forward after the goal and Richardson came close with a shot that dipped low before the keeper and nearly deceived him with the bounce, taking two attempts to keep it under control.

With 15 minutes left to go Sunderland broke ominously with Arca, no-one appeared to be able to get close enough to stop the Argentine winger's run and eventually the shot came in - Leeds were spared though as the shot cannoned back off the post. Lady Luck smiling on Leeds? Surely not.

Julian Joachim came on with 12 mintues left, replacing Aaron Lennon who had surely done enough to put himself in the manager's good books.

David Healy nearly grabbed the crucial third goal for Leeds on 80 minutes as he raced towards goal, the Black Cat's defence backing off all the time, and then found the space for the shot but drew a smart save from Myhre.

The killer goal was not long in coming though, five minutes before the end Matthew Kilgallon swept a long ball out to the right hand side, Sunderland anticpated the off-side flag but it never came, the ball falling for Wright who then delivered it low and hard into the box where Julian Joachim swept it home, giving Myhre no chance in the process.

Matty Spring could have added a fourth just before the end but his shot from the left of the area was tipped away by the Black Cats keeper.

Just as three minutes of extra time was announced to a half full Stadium of Light, Julio Arca put Sunderland back in with a chance of getting something out of the game as he despatched his free-kick into the top left hand corner of the net.

It set up a great finale to the game with the score 3-2 and both sides going for it one way or another.

Leeds had done enough though to secure the win and what a very merry Christmas present it was too!

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Yorkshire Post Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More

We weren't wealthy enoughFormer Leeds United director claims consortium didn't do 'sufficient homework' before taking over troubled club
A MEMBER of the consortium that took charge of Leeds United earlier this year has admitted they did not have sufficient resources to buy the club.
Richard Sutcliffe
David Richmond last night broke his silence on a four-month spell as managing director at Elland Road and admitted to wishing he had never got involved.
He was part of a five-man consortium led by current chairman Gerald Krasner that took over United in March, but quit in July after the gates to his home were padlocked by thugs as part of a campaign aimed at drivimg him away from Elland Road.
Leeds's debts have been reduced from more than £100m to just below £25m by the current board, although the club remain in financial trouble, Krasner last week asking the Inland Revenue for 'time to pay' an estimated bill of £1.2m. Substantial payments are also due to a number of former players in January.
The board agreed sale-leaseback deals for Elland Road and United's Thorp Arch training ground to help keep the club afloat, while all the star players have been sold.
The club remain in negotiations with Sebastien Sainsbury, over a proposed £25m takeover, and Norman Stubbs, a local businessman looking to invest in United, but nothing will happen until the New Year.
Richmond, the biggest single shareholder with 32 per cent until he transferred the majority of those to the remaining board members in September, said: "I have always been a Leeds United fan, even when a director at Bradford City, and it was a dream of mine to be involved in running the club. But it turned into a nightmare and I have had, without question, the worst year of my life.
"It has affected my health and also my family. If I could have my time again, I would not get involved. I, along with the other directors, have money in the club and if Leeds United go under then I will lose it.
"The football club owes me an awful lot of money, running into many hundreds of thousands of pounds. To some wealthy people that may not be a lot, but to me it is a fortune. Obviously, I would very much like that money back but it can only come out when the football club can afford it. I may or may not get it back."
On the five-man group that took over United in March, Richmond added: "We were not a wealthy enough consortium and we didn't do our homework sufficiently. Our plan needed the 20-year season ticket scheme to work, but unfortunately it didn't."
Krasner's group borrowed £15m from Aston Villa shareholder Jack Petchey to help fund their March takeover and hoped the 20-year season tickets would raise around two-thirds of that amount. However, only a handful of fans took up the offer and Leeds sold Elland Road to finally clear the debt to Petchey.
A club spokesman declined to comment last night on Richmond's comments, but Krasner told last month's press conference to announce the ground sale that "there is no more money in our consortium to put in".
Relegation from the Premiership cost United dear with the wage bill having to be cut dramatically and settlements needing to be reached with several players on long-term contracts in order for them to leave.
Richmond, who negotiated a number of those deals, has denied being paid £17,000 per month by United as part of a consultancy agreement drawn up after he left the club. It was reported the deal, set to run for 27 months, started on November 1 this year, but Richmond told the Yorkshire Post: "I have not received any money and that is a fact. A document was drawn up but nothing came of it.
"It was drawn up at a very different time when it looked like Leeds United was going to be taken over, but it did not happen. I could draw the money and I could also insist on my loan being paid back. But clearly I am not going to do that."

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Leeds United Football Club - Matchreport Leeds United vs Millwall

Leeds 1 Millwall 1
Pre-Match
United boss Kevin Blackwell has been able to name un unchanged side to the one that drew with West Ham a little over a week ago, with David Healy, Matthew Kilgallon, Jermaine Wright and Frazer Richardson having all shaken off injuries.
The Match
United were looking to build on the valuable away point gained at West Ham and they knew they would have to work for the full 90 minutes against a Millwall side that thrive on bringing a physical approach to the game.
They could have been given a rude awakening after just a minute when Lions skipper Darren Ward was left unmarked inside the area but fortunately sent his header well over the top of Neil Sullivan's goal.
Leeds though took control of the opening exchanges, Healy setting John Oster free down the right after two minutes but the offside flag was up against the Welshman.
With five minutes having been played the first real chance of the game came Brian Deane's way, but his header from the penalty spot was glanced just wide of the right hand post.
The dangerous and much coveted winger Paul Ifill could have given the visitors the lead in the tenth minute when he got past the United backline but fired his shot wide across the face of goal.
Former Leeds transfer target Barry Hayles, who rejected a move to Elland Road in favour of joining Sheffield United, swung an arm out at Sean Gregan in an act of retaliation to pick up the first yellow card of the game.
When Gregan fouled Peter Sweeney five yards outside the penalty area it presented Millwall with a good position from which to test Sullivan, but Sweeney's free-kick was straight into the keeper's arms.
Jermaine Wright was the first United player to go into referee Tony Leake's notebook when he went in with a crude challenge on Mark Phillips with quarter of an hour played.
Midway through the half Hayles shot from just to the left of the six-yard area not well taken by Sullivan and Ifill nearly got the ball off the Whites keeper but just couldn't control it.
Leeds best chance came eight minutes before the break, a cross in from Kelly was flicked on by Deane and Danny Pugh looked certain to score as he came in on the ball but poked it wide of the target on the volley.
Then Wright sent in a free-kick and it fell into the middle of the penalty area, hit Dichio and fell for Gregan whose shot flew well over the top as he lost his balance.
Leeds upped the pressure on the visitors as the half drew to a close, and when Pugh's corner was met well by the climbing figure of Matthew Kilgallon, the opening goal beckoned but his header was well held by Andy Marshall in the Millwall goal.
The breakthrough finally came two minutes before the break, Oster put through in the left of the penalty area by Healy, and instead of shooting first time he skipped the challenge of Livermore and curled his shot into the net left-footed. Although it hit an arm on the way in there was no way the referee was not going to allow the goal to stand.
No changes for either side at half-time, Kevin Blackwell would have sent his side out with the message that one goal was unlikely to be enough to secure the win and Leeds set about the task of getting a crucial second.
It was Millwall though who had the first shot on goal, Ifill trying his luck from 25-yards and drawing a smart save from Sullivan.
Nine minutes into the half and from a central position Kelly threaded through a perfect pass for Oster to collect and the on loan winger should really have scored his second goal but put his low drive too close to the keeper for an easy save.
Shortly afterwards Healy took Elliott out with a rash challenge near the sidelines and picked up a booking.
Worse was to follow barely a minute later when Sean Gregan was booked for a challenge on Ifill. That was his fifth booking and now he must sit out United's trip to Sunderland on Boxing Day.
As the hour mark approached David Healy shot wide from a good position, the oohs and ahhs of the crowd telling just how close he was to making the score 2-0.
Leeds continued to pour forward and create chances but Brian Deane missed another opportunity to put his name on the scoresheet when he headed a Kelly cross over from seven yards out.
It needed a good recovery from skipper Paul Butler to prevent Ifill from getting in a shot that could have levelled the scores on 65 minutes. The skipper had initially lost his footing as the ball came into the area but he got up well and blocked the winger's shot.
The crowd expected United's second to come when John Oster beat the off-side trap and squared the ball across the face of goal into the path of Healy. The Northern Ireland international tried to sidefoot the shot home but the keeper managed to block the shot with his body and the ball broke into space away from any Leeds player who might have had the opportunity to tuck it home into an empty net.
Millwall brought on a sub after 70 minutes and he nearly scored on his first opportunity but his shot from eight yards out went wide.
With quarter of an hour left Frazer Richardson suddenly burst into action and his shot from 25-yards looked to be heading towards the bottom right hand corner of the net but the keeper made the block and the ball squirmed under his body and out for a corner.
Jermaine Wright's afternoon came to an end on 78 minutes when Kevin Blackwell brought on the youngster Simon Walton.
A few minutes later and Brian Deane left the field to a standing ovation for his hard work and Julian Joachim was given a run out.

Having failed to get the second goal which would have killed the game, true to form Leeds were hit by the sucker-punch once again.
Paul Ifill appeared to handle the ball as he forced his way into the box but when Kelly stuck out a foot and sent him tumbling the referee pointed straight to the spot.
To make matters worse it was former United midfielder Jody Morris who stepped up and sent Sullivan the wrong way, blasting his spot-kick into the opposite corner of the net.
One suspension for the Boxing Day game at the Stadium of Light became two as Simon Walton picked up a needless booking for dissent.
The equaliser with five minutes left set up a frantic finish to the game with Leeds desperate to claw back all three points but despite piling on the pressure, that elusive second goal just would not come.
Leeds Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More

On the town Oster on the carpet
Blackwell showdown with loan ace
by charles heslett and paul dews
LEEDS UNITED boss Kevin Blackwell was today meeting John Oster to discuss the player's Elland Road future.
The on-loan Sunderland winger has been released with a police caution following his arrest in connection with a drunken brawl outside a nightclub.
The 26-year-old Welsh international was seized along with another man, aged 29 and from Skegness, following a fracas involving three men outside the Studio nightclub in North Road, Durham, in the early hours of yesterday morning.
United's players were on a day off yesterday, but Blackwell's first task today was to meet with Oster at the club's Thorp Arch training complex.
Said Blackwell: "As it stands we don't know the full circumstances and until then I can't really comment on what action we will take as a club."
As revealed in later editions of yesterday's Yorkshire Evening Post, Oster and another man were taken to Durham City police station following their arrest just after 12.40am.
The alleged victim declined to make an official complaint.
But Durham Constabulary are still considering whether to take further action as the incident is believed to have been captured on the city's CCTV system.
Following an interview with officers Oster, who has just had his loan deal extended by United until the New
Year, was released yesterday afternoon.
A spokeswoman for Durham Constabulary said: "A 26-year-old man from Washington and a 29-year-
old man from Skegness were interviewed at Durham City police office following which the younger man was formally cautioned and then released. No further action is to be taken against him.
"However the other man, the 29-year-old, has been released on police bail until January 20 pending further inquiries."
Oster has added a new dimension to the Leeds side since his arrival from the north east club, providing
a good outlet and a touch of pace on the right flank.
Sunderland boss Mick McCarthy has made it clear he is willing to allow the player to move on a permanent basis.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Yorkshire Post Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More

No Christmas relief for LeedsRichard Sutcliffe
GERALD KRASNER has revealed any possible rescue deal for Leeds United will not be completed until the New Year at the earliest as the Elland Road takeover saga rumbles on.
It means United are facing a second successive festive season in which their future is shrouded in doubt with the club even requesting time to pay a substantial tax bill that is due today.
The current board restructured the debt to the Inland Revenue on taking charge in March and have made regular payments since then. But the latest instalment, believed to be £1.2m, appears to be beyond United's reach so Krasner is seeking a deferral and a further rescheduling.
It is expected the Inland Revenue will agree to Krasner's request, especially as Leeds could soon be in the hands of new owners. United's solicitors met Sebastien Sainsbury's legal team to discuss his proposed £25m takeover on Monday afternoon after proof of funds were finally accepted.
Chairman Krasner told the Yorkshire Post last night: "The talks with Mr Sainsbury's legal team were reasonably productive. Various matters were discussed and we are now waiting for them to come back to us with certain things on paper.
"We cannot do anything until then and I can't see anything happening before the New Year due to the Christmas holidays."
On the attempt to delay having to make today's Inland Revenue repayment, Krasner said: "I can't discuss what I will say to the Inland Revenue until I have met them. As a club we do not comment on speculation, as and when something is confirmed we will go public."
The £25m needed to conclude the Sainsbury takeover deal is understood to be sitting in a London bank and can be moved at a moment's notice.
The 41-year-old great grandson of the supermarket chain founder declined to comment last night but is believed to be keen to push a deal through before Christmas, something that now appears unlikely.
It is almost two months since the Yorkshire Post revealed Sainsbury's interest in taking over at Elland Road. His first attempt, backed by American firm Nova Financial Partners, floundered but he revived his interest two and a half weeks ago after securing fresh finance from Europe.
Norman Stubbs remains in talks with the club over his own proposed investment, the local businessman's consortium originally looking to plough £9m into the club.
It is believed more money is needed, however, to secure United's long-term future and Stubbs is working on finding additional funding.
Despite Sainsbury's willingness to conclude a deal as soon as possible.
It is almost a year to the day since then chief executive Trevor Birch set a January deadline for new owners to take charge at a club whose debts topped £100m.
A deal with the club's American bondholders, who had lent the club £60m, bought Birch crucial time as he negotiated with several interested parties, including Sheikh Abdul bin Mubarak al-Khalifa.
Most of these discussions came to nothing, however, with only the current board able to provide the necessary funding and reach agreement with Birch.
In their nine-month reign, Krasner and his board have slashed United's debts to just under £25m but have had to agree sale-leaseback deals for both Elland Road and the club's Thorp Arch training ground.
On the subject of the Inland Revenue payment scheduled for today, a club spokesman told the Yorkshire Post three weeks ago: "There is a large payment due to a creditor next month but it is not a life or death situation for the club."
However, the request for time to pay the Inland Revenue suggests time and money is running out. Supporters must hope either Sainsbury or Stubbs can successfully conclude a deal in the near future and finally banish the uncertainty that has surrounded the club for far too long.
Meranwhile, Wigan Athletic manager Paul Jewell said yesterday he is refusing to be drawn into an auction for Leeds United goalkeeper Scott Carson.
The 19-year-old has been linked with a move to the Latics and Premiership giants Liverpool after it was revealed he has just six months remaining on his Elland Road contract.
Leeds met Carson's agent earlier this week and are faxing the offer of a new deal either today or tomorrow.
Despite the speculation of an offer having been lodged, Wigan manager Jewell insists: "We have not made any bid for Scott Carson.
"We watch a lot of players and Scott is a very good goalkeeper. But in this case I feel Leeds might be using us to try and set up an auction for the player. We will not be party to that."
United spokesman Bryan Morris countered: "There is no auction and I can assure supporters we want to keep Scott. The link with Wigan did not come from this football club and I can confirm we have not received one formal bid for Scott."
The 19-year-old has not made a first team appearance this season due to Neil Sullivan's fine form but is the first choice for England Under-21s.
Carson's current deal may run out next summer but even if he does not agree a new deal the goalkeeper will not be able to leave on a Bosman free transfer. A fee must be paid for any homegrown player under the age of 24 providing they join another English club, regardless of whether they are out of contract.
Guardian Unlimited Football | News | Fears of Leeds training ground house sell-off

Fears of Leeds training ground house sell-off

Matt Scott
Tuesday December 14, 2004

There are fears that houses may be built on a portion of Leeds United's training ground within the next five years. The Guardian has seen a document relating to the property interests of the club which suggests that should planning permission be received in the next five years a developer could erect houses or offices on the valuable land close to Wetherby.
Over the past six months the club has completed the sale and leaseback of its Thorp Arch premises, dividing the land into three separate tranches: the Grange, the Barn and the first-team training pitches. When the club was considering the last of these deals the proposed lease made specific provision for development.
In the event of the development going ahead, Leeds's tenancy on the first-team training pitches at Thorp Arch would be terminated. "The landlord has the right to end the lease on three months' prior written notice to the tenant if he obtains planning permission for the redevelopment of the whole or a substantial part of the premises during the first five years of the [25-year leasehold] term," the document states.
The Guardian has not been able to establish whether the lease for Thorp Arch was finalised in these terms, as the document has yet to be lodged with the Land Registry. When we raised the issues relating to the lease with the Leeds United chairman, Gerald Krasner, he declined to answer our questions. Last night he reiterated that he had no comment to make.
Obtaining planning permission for the Wetherby land may not be difficult. Leeds City Council's unitary development plan was revised in August 2003 to promote the conversion of the Thorp Arch area into a Strategic Housing Site under central government's push for brownfield developments.
The area, in a region north of Leeds known as the "Golden Triangle" that includes Wetherby and Harrogate, is highly desirable to property developers. Even if no planning permission is granted, according to the report Leeds's right to remain on the first-team training pitch would expire in October 2029, since the relevant lease is non-renewable.
In the event of Leeds having to leave the site around the first-team training pitches, they would be left with just the academy buildings at Thorp Arch Grange and the sports complex facilities known as Thorp Arch Barn.
Though it was initially reported that these had been sold to and leased back from the Manchester-based property developer named Jacob Adler, as part of a wholesale purchase of the entire site, the report states that one of the tranches is owned by another landlord.
David Newett, a businessman from Wetherby, apparently bought the Thorp Arch Grange portion of the training ground in July this year, three months before the board stated its intention to sell the site.
There is a clause in which the club undertakes to support any planning application made for the Grange for a period of 50 years to 2054.
Though the club's finance director Melvin Helme declared at the time of the October sales that Leeds would benefit from "a satisfactory buy-back clause", there may in fact only be an option to do so for the Barn area of the training ground.
When contacted yesterday, Helme also declined to comment.
The impact of the Barn sale is further compounded by the fact that the club could exercise the buy-back option only until October 2009. If the club were to choose to exercise the buyback a premium of between £1m and £1.6m on the initially reported £4.2m sale price is envisaged. In the meantime, Leeds would pay more than £11m in rent for the barn site to Adler's company and a further £4.1m to £4.5m to Newett for the Grange over the next 25 years. The obligation for the higher-level payments would arise if Newett were to buy Elland Road by March 31 next year, though there appears to be no current plan to do so.
Leeds fans last night expressed concerns at the implications of the sale. "I'm concerned that something with far more value that was achieved has been signed away for good," said John Boocock, the chairman of Leeds United Supporters Trust. "In supporters' minds this also raises questions about the sale and leaseback of Elland Road."
The circumstances of that transaction - also carried out between the board and Adler's company Barnaway - are at present opaque. The registration documents for Elland Road sales have also yet to be lodged with the Land Registry.
It is understood that Leeds are also committed to paying about £180,000 per year in rent for land at Elland Road transferred to the casino operators Stanley Leisure for £5.2m in October. The club's subsidiary company, Leeds United Retail Ltd, will only be released from their obligation to continue paying rent if the casino development goes ahead.
Should Stanley - or another casino firm - pursue the development, Leeds stand to make up to £9.825m, though the government has recently reduced the number of casinos that it expects to license under the new Gambling Bill.
Leeds's board has already reduced the club's debts from £104m, where they stood at the time of the Adulant Force takeover in March, to less than £25m, assisted by the £20m secured in sales of land and property at Thorp Arch and Elland Road. Yet despite this influx Leeds still have some pressing debts to honour, including an imminent £1.2m payment to the Inland Revenue.
"Because of the way football is run, we are not allowed access to information," said Boocock. "In Leeds's case, because the club is a private company, it is difficult for fans to know who owns what.
"In this day and age, as principal stakeholders in a club, we expect far more. We need more transparency, and if that means parliamentary legislation is required, so be it."

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Yorkshire Post Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More

Healy rescues Leeds late onWest Ham United 1
Leeds United 1
David Healy's stoppage-time penalty rescued a hard-fought draw for Leeds United in the Coca-Cola Championship at West Ham last night.
Leeds started the match strongly but struggled in the second half, having fallen behind to Luke Chadwick's goal just after half-time.
The visitors had a good chance to take the lead on 11 minutes when a poor back pass from Hammers' on-loan defender Darren Powell presented Brian Deane with a sight on goal. But the veteran striker's shot clipped the bar against his former club.
Leeds continued to have the better of the early chances and a 35-yard drive by Healy brought a good save from Stephen Bywater after 14 minutes.
The Hammers' appeals for a penalty in the 23rd minute were quashed when Leeds captain Paul Butler appeared to foul Sergei Rebrov in the box before Healy again went close from distance – shooting first time and forcing Bywater to tip the ball behind for a corner.
Chadwick was always a danger for West Ham and he carved out a good opportunity in the 34th minute when he charged into the Leeds box before pulling the ball back only for Neil Sullivan to collect before a Hammers striker could poke the ball home.
Rebrov was taken off at half-time to be replaced by Teddy Sheringham and just four minutes later West Ham took the lead.
An excellent cross by Matt Etherington found Marlon Harewood in the area. The striker's header was blocked, but only into the path of the impressive Chadwick, who stabbed the ball past the despairing hands of Sullivan.
The goalscorer went off injured on 56 minutes to be replaced by Nigel Reo-Coker, and West Ham piled on the pressure.
Steve Lomas had a good chance on 72 minutes but was denied and from the resulting corner Powell fired just wide.
Two minutes later, Sheringham found space in the box to shoot only for Sullivan to save from point-blank range.
Leeds sent on Julian Joachim for Deane 10 minutes before the end in an attempt to rescue something from the game.
Leeds manager Kevin Blackwell also threw Jamie McMaster and Steve Walton into the fray searching for a point a point.
It eventually arrived when Lomas brought down Healy in the area, and the same player picked himself up to score from the spot.
Blackwell, who was delighted with the result, tried to stay well clear of commenting on the controversial penalty decision.
"I think the lads felt they deserved a penalty in the first half and were a bit disappointed so they are very happy to get one in the second half which has earned us a point," he said.
"The referee has given the penalty and it has given us a share of the points which is brilliant for the lads. They deserve something to go right for them at the moment.
"It is a good result, not just for me and the players or the fans, but for the whole club. We have had a couple of bad ones in recent weeks and this is a tonic for everyone.
"Things are difficult at the moment but we have to keep on going.
"I don't think we have been playing badly this season but things just have not been going our way. This was perhaps the little bit of luck we needed."
West Ham United: Bywater, Ferdinand, Repka, D Powell, C Powell, Chadwick (Reo-Coker 67), Lomas, Fletcher, Etherington, Rebrov (Sheringham 45), Harewood.
Leeds United: Sullivan, Kelly, Butler, Kilgallon, Pugh, Richardson, Gregan, Wright (Walton 90), Oster (McMaster 86), Healy, Deane (Joachim 80).
Referee: M Pike (Cumbria).
Sport

Pardew rues 'cruel blow' as Leeds rescue point
West Ham United 1 - Leeds United 1
By Amar Azam
11 December 2004


A torrent of boos rained down upon David Healy and his Leeds United team-mates as they walked off the Upton Park pitch but they left east London safe in the knowledge they had snatched a precious point with a controversial late penalty.

The Northern Ireland striker converted the spot-kick after his tumble in the penalty area three minutes into injury time, leaving West Ham manager Alan Pardew fuming with referee Mike Pike's contentious award.

"We are incensed with the decision," said Pardew. "There were one or two claims before that and they shouldn't have reflected on the third decision.

"He took a desperate dive and the referee has given the decision. It is a cruel blow for the players and their efforts. We were defending very well but we should have got the second." Three minutes was all it took for West Ham to welcome back Leeds for their first clash in two years, Ukrainian striker Sergei Rebrov unleashing a powerful right-footed drive which Neil Sullivan did well to palm away.

Leeds, having gained just two wins in 11 League games, had slumped to their lowest league position under manager Kevin Blackwell but were almost gifted the lead on 11 minutes. Defender Darren Powell's backpass was intercepted by an alert Brian Deane, but the striker's dipping effort hit the bar.

And despite coming into this game with confidence brimming having beaten Sunderland last week, West Ham looked unconvincing as they failed to ask any real questions of their visitors.

Healy, playing in a fluid three-man front-line, tested Stephen Bywater with an instinctive drive on 28 minutes. The West Ham goalkeeper reacted well to tip the ball over. And Danny Pugh had an appeal for a penalty turned down after tumbling under Anton Ferdinand's challenge as Leeds, sensing their opponents' vulnerability, pushed forward.

With Teddy Sheringham on at half-time, Alan Pardew's men shook off the cobwebs and Luke Chadwick took the lead after four minutes. Midfielder Matthew Etherington's cross was bundled into the path of the former Manchester United winger who made no mistake from close range for his first goal at the club.

The goal inspired last season's losing play-off finalists, and despite the impressive Chadwick hobbling off on 66 minutes, West Ham shed the cautious approach, Steve Lomas being denied by a last-ditch tackle by Matthew Kilgallon.

But deep into stoppage time, Healy stole a share of the points.

Blackwell said: "Maybe justice was done at the end. I do not condone any cheating but if he [Healy] has done that, I will have a word with him."

West Ham United (4-4-2): Bywater; Repka, C Powell, D.Powell, Ferdinand; Lomas, Chadwick (Reo-Coker, 66mins), Etherington, Fletcher; Rebrov (Sheringham, 45mins), Harewood. Substitutes not used: Burch (gk); Mullins, Zamora.

Leeds United (4-3-3): Sullivan; Kelly, Butler, Kilgallon, Richardson; Wright (Walton, 89mins), Pugh, Gregan; Healy, Deane (Joachim, 79mins), Oster (McMaster, 86mins). Substitutes not used: Carson (gk); Spring.

Referee: M Pike (Barrow-in-Furness).
Guardian Unlimited Football | Match Reports | Hammers rise in anger as Healy falls

Hammers rise in anger as Healy falls

Sean Ingle at Upton Park
Saturday December 11, 2004

As widespread boos rattled round the Boleyn ground, David Healy slotted home an injury-time penalty which salvaged an unlikely point for Leeds United last night.
West Ham's players as well as their fans were incensed at the way Healy had gone to ground under an innocuous-looking challenge from Neil Lomas.
Until Healy's goal Leeds had looked set for their third successive defeat after Luke Chadwick had put West Ham ahead on 50 minutes. However, the home side wasted countless chances and probably only had themselves to blame.
West Ham came into the match on the back of two successive victories, so there was no surprise that the home side - buoyed by a near-capacity crowd - piled forward from the start and after only three minutes Neil Lomas's ferocious drive from 20 yards was palmed unconvincingly away by Neil Sullivan.
But, having weathered the initial storm, Leeds began to assert themselves and should have gone ahead on 12 minutes when Brian Deane capitalised on some monumental dilly-dallying by Darren Powell, only to crash his shot against the bar with Stephen Bywater to beat.
Bywater was fully tested two minutes later, when David Healy cut inside and hit a curler from 20 yards towards the bottom left-hand corner. Although it bounced awkwardly in front of him, the West Ham goalkeeper saved at the second attempt.
West Ham looked to have a case for a penalty midway through the half when Sergei Rebrov tripped Paul Butler, gained half a yard, and was caught by the Leeds defender's leading leg. The referee, however, pointed for a corner.
Initially, Leeds were happy to play on the break with Deane as the lone front man in a 4-5-1 formation but as the half progressed they became increasingly adventurous, with Healy, in particular, looking lively. Indeed, when Powell's errant header fell at Healy's feet, Bywater had to be at his best to tip the former Preston striker's 25-yard lob over the bar.
Leeds also felt they should have had a penalty when Healy played in Danny Pugh. But rather than stay on his feet and shoot, Pugh waited for the challenge of Anton Ferdinand before going down. Leeds bayed for a penalty to no avail.
Alan Pardew shook things up at half-time by introducing Teddy Sheringham for the disappointing Rebrov and within five minutes West Ham were ahead, though messily. Matthew Etherington's away-swinging cross bobbled off Matthew Kilgallon, hit Marlon Harewood on the way down, before Luke Chadwick finally poked home from close range.
Late on West Ham began to dominate for the first time and chances came and went in a blur: Lomas, put through by Harewood, could only shoot feebly at Sullivan, then Harewood's near-range header was deflected wide and a Sheringham flick was tipped over. It looked to be enough - until Healy's late, late, penalty.
Leeds United Football Club - Matchreport West Ham United vs Leeds United

David Healy stepped up and comfortably converted the late penalty which arrested the slide for Leeds United, and it was no more than they deserved.

Healy had missed his first penalty for the club, in a game against where it did not matter, but with all the pressure bearing down on him, he kept his cool and fired home. The relief was evident as every Leeds player got together in a huddle to celebrate.

The decision to award the spot-kick was met with fierce protests from the West Ham players, and even Kevin Blackwell would admit it was generous, but there had been two more obvious penalties for Leeds that the referee was not so generous with.

On balance, neither side can complain too much about a point from a game that really only sprang to life in the last half hour.

Team News:

United boss Kevin Blackwell made two changes to the side that lost at Elland Road against Leicester last week.

Clarke Carlisle's ankle injury meant he wasn't able to feature in the game and was replaced at centre-half by Matthew Kilgallon, whose left-back position was filled by Frazer Richardson, normally a right-back.

Danny Pugh, rested for the previous two games, returned to the left wing with Simon Walton the man to miss out, the manager taking the decision to rest the teenager.

West Ham made no changes to the side that beat Sunderland 2-0 in their previous game at the Stadium of Light.

The Match

Leeds found themselves under some early pressure as the home side came out with all guns blazing.

Three minutes were on the clock when Sergei Rebrov became the first player to go for goal but his dipping shot was parried away by Neil Sullivan in the United goal and Leeds escaped punishment from the second ball as Matthew Etherington's cross back into the box was aimless.

Darren Powell hit the bar from West Ham's first corner but he was pulled up for a foul after the referee spotted use of the arm.

United's first real attack of any promise came on nine minutes when Danny Pugh swung in a corner, it was returned to him out wide and he struck a fierce shot into the area that may have been on target but was hastily cleared away by Anton Ferdinand at the expense of another corner.

Leeds were unable to make anything from their second corner, but a minute later they were nearly gifted an unexpected opener.

Brian Deane robbed Darren Powell by the cornerflag and went for goal from a narrow angle, just clipping the crossbar with the keeper beaten and true to form the ball didn't bounce favorably back into play for an easy tap in.

David Healy then saw a shot on the turn saved by Stephen Bywater in the Hammers goal, although it took him two attempts to control the strike.

On 18 minutes David Healy was brought tumbling to the ground by West Ham 'hardman' Tomas Repka with a tackle from behind and the defender was given a warning by referee Mike Pike.

Five minutes later Leeds had a lucky escape after a real foul up inside their own area after Repka's free-kick was missed and then skipper Paul Butler produced a rare error as he lost control of the ball and ended up tangling with Repka before clearing the ball for a corner.

It was United's turn to get a chance from a mistake on the half hour and it nearly ended with another spectacular goal for David Healey. The striker latched onto a missed header from Darren Powell and shot from 25-yards but the keeper got the slightest of touches to just do enough to turn it away from goal for a corner.

The half ended for United with a contentious penalty decision, which needless to say, United were not given. As Danny Pugh was played through on the edge of the area by Brian Deane, a foot came out from Ferdinand and appeared to trip the left-winger, but the referee was close to the action and waved play on, judging that Ferdinand got to the ball first.

United started well in the second half but just four minutes in and they found themselves a goal down after failing to deal with a searching cross into the box.

It was Etheringron who played the ball in from the left wing and the header from Marlon Harewood came off an unfortunate Matthew Kilgallon and fell nicely for Luke Chadwick to fire home.

Leeds had somehow got to lift themselves to avoid a fourth consecutive defeat.

With ten minutes of the half played Leeds should have been back on level terms when David Healy played the ball into the area and Brian Deane came steaming in and smashed the ball from ten yards out- unfortunately he somehow missed the target again.

The home side made another change on 66 minutes, taking the goalscorer Luke Chadwick off and replacing him with Nigel Reo-Coker.

Leeds were struggling to create more gilt-edged chances, but whilst the score remained 1-0 there was always hope and they played with plenty of it, just weren't able to find the final ball in the last third of the pitch that has eluded them so much this season.

The Whites were fortunate not to be 2-0 down on 72 minutes when Steve Lomas broke clear after playing the quick one-two, but were were grateful to Matthew Kilgallon for getting back and putting in a sliding tackle to block the shot.

The near chance lifted the crowd and West Ham turned up the pressure and when Sheringham shot from ten yards the travelling fans behind Neil Sullivan's goal feared the worst, but Sheri's strike was expertly turned away by Sullivan.

Gary Kelly was the first Leeds player booked just after the chance for cutting short Etherington's run.

Sullivan was again called upon to save United when he turned over Reo-Coker's header from six yards out after the free-kick from the increasingly dangerous Etherington had found the forward with pin-point accuracy.

Jamie McMaster came on for Oster with five minutes left to see if he could rescue something from the game with his trickery. A few minutes later and United's final change saw Simon Walton on for Jermaine Wright.

Leeds were denied a penalty right on the stroke of the end of normal time when Darren Powell clearly handballed inside the area but nothing was given.

Whilst United were still making their protests and West Ham were counting their lucky stars Leeds were finally awarded a penalty!

It was Steve Lomas's clumsy challenge on Healy in the area that saw referee Mike Pike award it, and Healy stepped up to take it and superbly blasted the ball hard and low into the right hand corner of the net, comfortably beating the keeper even if he did guess the right way.

The final whistle went to cries of cheat, cheat aimed at the United squad who immediately went over to celebrate with the Leeds fans, but justice had finally been served and for once Leeds got some reward.
Sport

Sainsbury forces new Leeds meeting
By Nick Harris
11 December 2004


Sebastien Sainsbury's on-off bid to buy Leeds United was given fresh impetus yesterday when the Elland Road chairman admitted talks regarding a £25m buy-out will resume next week.

Gerald Krasner terminated protracted negotiations with a Sainsbury-fronted, American-backed consortium on 12 November, saying the group had failed to provide proof of funding. Sainsbury subsequently parted company from the US investors, Nova Financial Partners, and found another investor, thought to be an Italian multi-millionaire, and restructured the deal.

Although Leeds dismissed Sainsbury's renewed efforts as recently as last week, Krasner said yesterday: "A meeting is planned between our legal team and Mr Sainsbury's legal team early next week.

"We will then need time to digest what is said at that meeting so it is impossible to say what will happen after that."

The meeting will take place at 9.30am on Monday. Sainsbury is proposing to buy back Elland Road and the club's Thorp Arch training complex, and invest at least £5m in new players. Krasner's board recently sold the club's major property assets to alleviate debt.

Krasner has been in talks for several months with another consortium, headed by a local businessman, Norman Stubbs. It is thought that doubts over that bid have forced Krasner back to Sainsbury.

Stubbs has been involved in his own on-off talks with Sainsbury, but the parties have yet to come close to agreeing any terms for a joint buy-out.
BLACKWELL: WE DESERVED POINT: Sporting Life - Football | Arsenal v Chelsea, Transfer News, Live Scores, Barclays Premiership, SPL, Championship, European News, Fixtures, Results, Tables

BLACKWELL: WE DESERVED POINT
Leeds boss Kevin Blackwell was satisfied three wrongs had made one right after David Healy's controversial injury-time penalty rescued a Coca-Cola Championship point for struggling Leeds in a 1-1 draw at West Ham.

Defeat was on the cards for the visitors until Healy tumbled under the challenge of his Northern Ireland international colleague Steve Lomas, and referee Mike Pike pointed to the spot after earlier turning down what had appeared stronger claims.

Healy kept his cool to fire past Stephen Bywater for the equaliser which left Blackwell delighted.

He said: "I'm just pleased to get a very good point against a very good side.

"West Ham aren't happy with the penalty. But Danny Pugh should have had a penalty in the first half, and Darren Powell's was a definite handball.

"I don't condone diving. If the video shows that David has dived I will have a word with him.

"People call for TV replays - and if we had them tonight we would have won 2-1 with two penalties."

Whatever the means, Blackwell judged the outcome to be fair.

"I'm not going to say anything about the ref - it would cost me two weeks' wages," he said.

"My lads deserve great credit for battling away and getting a great point."



Pike seemed to make up for his earlier decisions by awarding the late spot-kick to leave Hammers boss Alan Pardew furious.

He said: "We are incensed with the penalty decision. There were two claims earlier - but that shouldn't affect the referee's next decision.

"It was a desperate dive, an obvious dive, but the referee has given it. We are very disappointed with the point.

"In the first half we only played as well as Leeds let us - because they came to do a job and did it well. But once we got the goal, I was impressed with the lads' performance. We played some terrific stuff, and injury time was a cruel blow for the lads."
Yorkshire Post Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More

Krasner ready for fresh talksRichard Sutcliffe
SEBASTIEN SAINSBURY'S £25m bid to take over Leeds United could move a step closer on Monday after club officials agreed to meet his legal team.
The 41-year-old great grandson of the founder of the supermarket chain revived his interest in taking charge at Elland Road early last week after securing fresh backing.
United chairman Gerald Krasner immediately ruled out possible talks, accusing Sainsbury of 'spoiling tactics', while stressing a possible investment of £9m by local businessman Norman Stubbs was the more likely option.
But last night Krasner told the Yorkshire Post: "A meeting is planned between our legal team and Mr Sainsbury's legal team early next week. We will then need time to digest what is said at that meeting so it is impossible to say what will happen after that.
"As a club, we do not deal in speculation and no further comment will be made until the contents of that meeting have been fully digested by the board."
Krasner insists talks are still on-going with the Stubbs consortium, who plan an investment rather than an outright takeover at Elland Road. United's debts stand at a little under £25m with a substantial tax bill, believed to be in the region of £1m, having to be paid next Tuesday.
Sainsbury delivered what he considers to be "irrefutable" proof of funds late last month, an official bank document stating £25m was available subject to contract.
Sainsbury was not available for comment but the Yorkshire Post understands United's legal team will sit down with his lawyers on Monday.
It is Sainsbury's second bid to buy Leeds after his initial attempt, backed by American company Nova Financial Partners, failed four weeks ago.
The Americans have since returned home and Sainsbury has this time secured European backing. The news Sainsbury's takeover could be back on comes as Kevin Blackwell and his side prepare for tonight's Championship trip to West Ham United.
It will be Sean Gregan's first appearance since being verbally abused by a small group of fans in the Elland Road car park an hour after last week's defeat at Leicester City.
The United midfielder, who was with his pregnant wife and 14-month-old son at the time, has this week been inundated with goodwill messages from fans with one even turning up at the training ground yesterday to hand over a bouquet of flowers.
Team-mate David Healy, who faces a fitness test on his groin tonight, also played with Gregan at Preston.
He said: "As footballers, we all know we have to take the rough with the smooth but the abuse of Sean and his family was out of order.
"I have known him for a long time. I know he is tough enough and strong enough to come through this. He is not a quitter and has broad shoulders.
"The fans may not appreciate what he does for the team but we do.
"Sean is never going to be one of those who waltzes past two or three opponents. Instead, he sits in front of the back four and gets through a lot of hard work."
On the trip to Upton Park, Healy added: "It might just suit us to play away because all the pressure is going to be on West Ham.
"They are a bit like us; having recently come out of the Premiership, they are a team everyone wants to beat at this level.
"It is a big game for us as we need to find some sort of consistency if we are to climb the table."
Clarke Carlisle will face a fitness test on his ankle but Brian Deane is fit to face his former club, despite picking up a knock against Leicester.
Kevin Blackwell: "I can understand the fans' frustration. It comes from what has happened at this club over the last three years. We have the responsibility to give them something to shout about."
Last time: November 10, 2002: West Ham United 3 Leeds United 4, Premiership.
Positions: West Ham 5th, Leeds 19th.
Key man: Neil Sullivan
BBC SPORT | Football | My Club | Leeds United | Leeds to offer Carson fresh deal

Leeds to offer Carson fresh deal

Carson has impressed for Leeds to date
Leeds United will offer young goalkeeper Scott Carson a new contract at Elland Road.
The 19-year-old's deal expires at the end of the season but Leeds are keen to tie him down to a long-term contract.

"He could be a free agent soon but we want to keep him at the club which is the reason for this new contract," said club spokesman Brian Morris.

"We believe he and several other young players at the club are the future of this club and we want him to stay."

Carson has made just two first-team appearances for Leeds against Chelsea and Manchester United last season.

He is courting interest from a host of Premiership clubs, which Leeds admitted could scupper hopes of keeping him at Leeds.

"If a big club comes in you cannot stop the lad from moving, especially if it's a top Premiership club that came in for him," added Morris.

"We cannot say he's not for sale, but we are going to offer him a new contract and then it's entirely up to the lad if he wants to stay.

"If someone does comes in for in January and he decides he does not want to go, then it is his choice and we will be delighted with that."

Monday, December 06, 2004

Yorkshire Post Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More

Leeds in danger of prolonging declineIan Appleyard at Elland Road
Leeds United 0
Leicester City 2
KEVIN BLACKWELL reserved criticism of his players to the confines of the dressing room but nothing can hide the latest crisis engulfing Leeds United.
Defeat against Leicester City on Saturday plunged Leeds yet another step closer to the Championship relegation zone and prompted angry supporters to vent clear disapproval at the final whistle.
Chants of 'What a load of rubbish' and 'You are not fit wear to the shirt' have rarely been heard at Elland Road over the last 15 years but Leeds are sinking to new depths and could yet drop into League One unless things improve.
Manager Blackwell inherited a thankless task last summer and deserves more time to get it right – but the patience of supporters and club directors is already starting to wear thin.
Fresh from the embarrassment of losing to the division's bottom club Rotherham United five days earlier, Leeds produced a shockingly toothless display that sent shivers down the spine for all the wrong reasons. Both in attack and defence, they committed footballing suicide; striker Brian Deane missing a sitter and defender Gary Kelly scoring a ridiculous own goal.
The midfield trio of Jermaine Wright, Simon Walton and Sean Gregan played pretty stuff but always in a sideways direction, lacking either the confidence or the ability to go for the jugular.
It was the sort of performance that can leave a manager tearing out his hair and Blackwell ripped into his players in the dressing room afterwards.
Defender Clarke Carlisle said: "We have been given a right ear-bashing – but the gaffer was right. It is getting to the stage now where the league table does not lie.
"We are too near to the bottom of the table. We keep saying how well we have been playing without getting the results but now the results are more important than the performances.
"We are not even halfway through the season but we have got to start doing something about it now. We have to got turn this bus around.''
Carlisle had shaken off the ankle injury suffered at Rotherham to maintain his place in the Leeds side. Deane had returned from a hamstring injury to replace Michael Ricketts, who did not even warrant a place on the bench.
The first half was a dour affair with little in the way of sparkle to lift a subdued crowd. Leeds enjoyed plenty of early possession but, other than a header from David Healy which was pushed around the post by the goalkeeper, created few goalscoring opportunities.
Leicester improved towards halftime and it needed two fine saves from Leeds goalkeeper Neil Sullivan to deny Joey Gudjonsson and David Connolly.
Two minutes after the break, Leicester scored when Leeds failed to clear a Keith Gillespie corner and Lilian Nalis rifled the ball home.
The game hinged on two incidents inside the space of four minutes midway through the second half.
First, Deane spooned the ball over the Leicester crossbar when it looked easier to score and then Kelly dived at a Gillespie cross and headed it past his own goalkeeper.
It was the signal for many Leeds fans to head for the exit gates, those who stayed sat and suffered.
From the lofty heights of a Champions League semi-final to the possibility of relegation to League One in just three years. What has already been a frightening decline may not yet be over.
Leeds United: Sullivan; Kelly, Carlisle (Joachim 77), Butler, Kilgallon (McMaster 83); Wright, Gregan, Walton; Oster (Richardson 66), Healy; Deane.
Leicester City: Taylor; Makin, Dublin, Dabizas, Stewart; Gillespie (Blake 84), Gemmill (Williams 89), Nalis, Gudjonsson; Scowcroft, Connelly (Morris 80).
Referee: U Rennie (Sheffield)
Leeds Man of the Match: Healy

Sunday, December 05, 2004

people.co.uk - FOOTBALL: LILIAN ON THE LASH TO GIVE KEV SHAKES

Leeds 0 Leicester 2
By Andrew Collomosse
BEFORE the game Leeds boss Kevin Blackwell tipped both these sides to figures in the promotion shake-up at the end of the season.
But while Craig Levein's no-nonsense outfit showed why they looked set to climb the table after a disappointing start, it's hard to see Blackwell's men heading back towards the big time.
Beaten at Rotherham a week ago Leeds stumbled to their fourth home defeat of the season - and another hangover - courtesy of a 48th-minute strike by Lilian Nalis and a Gary Kelly own goal with 12 minutes left.
And while Leeds had their chances, they never looked anything like as resilient as a Leicester side which has conceded just 10 goals in 11 away games.
Yet it might have been a different story had Leeds hitman David Healy not fluffed a simple chance in the fifth minute.
The £500,000 striker looked odds on to notch his fourth goal in eight games since leaving Preston when he met a cross from John Oster.
But with only Stuart Taylor to beat he placed his header too near the keeper, who saved well.
Brian Deane had a shot well blocked by Jordan Stewart but, with Dion Dublin in commanding form at the back, Leeds found openings hard to create.
Leicester might easily have gone in front when a curling free-kick from Joey Gudjonsson was tipped over by Neil Sullivan.
From the corner David Connolly smacked in a 20-yarder but Sullivan saved well.
Then Nalis pounced to fire the Foxes in front. The Frenchman was in the right place at the right time to lash in an 18 yard shot after a game of pinball in the box following a Keith Gillespie corner.
Oster's fierce shot was well saved by Taylor. And as Leeds pressed, Deane headed wide from close range and saw another header tipped over by Taylor.
The big striker then fluffed a glorious chance, shooting over from point-blank range when a goal looked certain.
And Leeds paid a high price when Gillespie's right-wing cross was headed past his own keeper by the hapless Kelly.
LEEDS: Sullivan 6 - Kelly 5, Carlisle 6 (Joachim, 76mins), Butler 6, Kilgallon 6 (McMaster, 82mins) - *OSTER 7 (Richardson, 65mins, 6), Wright 5, Gregan 6, Walton 5 - Deane 6, Healy 6.
LEICESTER: Taylor 7 - Makin 6, *DUBLIN 8, Dabizas 7, Stewart 7 - Gillespie 7 (Blake, 83mins), Nalis 7, Gemmill 7 (Williams, 89mins), Gudjonsson 6 - Connolly 7 (Morris, 79mins), Scowcroft 7. Referee: U Rennie 6
Leeds United Football Club - Matchreport Leeds United vs Leicester City

Team news

United boss Kevin Blackwell has been able to field a near full strength team with Clarke Carlisle completing a miraculous recovery from a tendon injury and Brian Deane returning after overcoming a hamstring problem that kept him out of Monday's defeat at Rotherham. David Healy had a groin problem in midweek but also plays on. Matthew Kilgallon remained at left-back.

The Match

There were just three minutes on the clock when Leeds created their first good opening.

Brian Deane battled for the ball 20-yards out and managed to get it through to John Oster, he then flighted the ball in for Healy to come in on and everyone anticipated the first goal of the game when the Northern Ireland international met it with a clean header but it was too close to Stuart Taylor in the Leicester goal and the shot wandered wide.

Leeds continued to press hard and won two corners in the opening twelve minutes, the latter of which came when Healy's cut back from the byline was just knocked out before Simon Walton could get a tap in.

The two sides then became physical with each other as Oster and Leicester's Greek international Nikos Dabizas became embroiled in a pushing match deep in the visitors half. Jordan Stewart came charging in and pushed Oster but
referee Uriah Rennie remained calm and called just the original protagonists over and decided that a stern warning for the pair was all that was needed.

City's Icelandic midfielder Joey Gudjonsson was fortunate to escape a booking just a minute later when he went in late and hard on Oster.

Leeds were fortunate to escape some concerted pressure from Leicester that came about when Gary Kelly conceded a free-kick for a foul on Stewart in a dangerous position just to the left of the area with 25 minutes gone.

Gudjonsson took the free kick and curled it towards goal, forcing Neil Sullivan into a one handed save, tipping the ball over the top of his own goal. He was called into action again when the corner was met with a fierce half-volley from David Connolly, and again he managed to turn the ball away.

With eight minutes to go to half-time Leeds were dealt a scare when Sean Gregan was injured in a challenge. After receiving treatment on the sidelines though he limped back on the field.

It had been a quiet half for Leeds but it nearly finished with a goal to United when Oster crossed a ball in that Deane couldn't quite get to but it fell to Healy just si. Forced to turn with his back to goal, Healy saw his shot closed down just as the last moment as the ball went out for a corner. He had another chance from it but hammered Gregan's cross against Deane and then the whistle went for the end of the half.


Less than two minutes into the second half Leeds fell behind when Leicester scored after some scrappy defending inside a packed penalty area.

Gillespie delivered a cross into the box which produced an almighty goalmouth scramble in which Leeds just couldn't appear to clear the ball and eventually it came back for Lilian Nalis who hit it with a right footed half volley into the top right hand corner of the net.

It was up to Leeds to pick themselves up and more importantly make the most of their chances now.

United's first chance to hit back came from a corner that Wright delivered long into the box, Gregan picked up possession and fed Oster, who took the ball on into the penalty area and let fly with a good shot that was palmed away by Taylor in the Foxes goal.

Just before the hour mark, everyone in the Kop was screaming for a penalty after Brian Deane was clattered to the ground by three Leicester defenders as he went to meet Kelly's long throw into the area, all he got though was a corner. Wright delivered it long again and Gregan headed it back into the penalty area and then Deane came close but still headed it wide of the target.

Five minutes later Healy crossed the ball in and Deane went up to challenge the keeper for it, knocking the ball loose but it fell for Dabizas to get a good clearance on. A minute later skipper Paul Butler headed another cross wide.

Kevin Blackwell made his first change on 66 minutes, bringing Frazer Richardson on and taking John Oster off. Richardson had been due to start the game until Clarke Carlisle recovered from his injury.

Brian Deane's quick return had also been a bonus but he was denied a seventh goal of the season by another good save from Stuart Taylor, on loan to the Foxes from Arsenal. Walton had crossed it perfectly into the area and Deane's header on target from five yards out was tipped over the bar by the former England under-21 keeper.

Deane missed a much easier chance though just two minutes later when he somehow put a shot over from three yards out. Frazer Richardson's run to the byline was just what Blackwell had put him on for, the cut-back came in perfectly for Deane but somehow it sliced off the top of his boot. He will have few better chances.

Clarke Carlisle came off on 76 minutes looking as if he was feeling the effects of the injury he picked up against Rotherham still, with Julian Joachim going on.

Immediately after the change a shocked Elland Road fell into stony silence when Leicester were gifted their second goal of the game.

Inexplicably it came from an own goal as Gary Kelly attempted to head it back towards the arms of Neil Sullivan but headed it past the keeper and in. The afternoon was just getting worse for the Whites.

Still Leeds continued to go forward well but couldn't find a finish to match some of the play that helped them get into goalscoring positions. When Deane flicked a ball on it fell to Healy on the penalty spot who appeared to get enough on the ball to turn it in, but it bounced straight up and Leicester were able to get back and clear.

United's third change came with eight minutes of the half remaining, Jamie McMaster, scorer of two goals for the reserves in midweek, coming on and Matthew Kilgallon going off.

As the game drew to a close it was clear Leeds had run out of ideas and would have to put this game down as another to forget about.
Leeds Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More

Gylfi's United Career On Ice
By PAUL DEWS
NEW Icelandic star Gylfi Einarsson will learn his Leeds United fate next week.
The Elland Road club have appealed to FIFA in the hope of securing his availability sooner rather than later and football's governing body are poised to deliver their decision.
The English FA are refusing to let the former Lillestrom midfielder play until the international transfer window re-opens in January – but they have said they will comply with any ruling from FIFA.
Einarsson, pictured, was technically unemployed on Tuesday when his playing contract in Norway expired and, under EU law, should be free to gain employment elsewhere.
He has agreed a short-term contract with Leeds and is now playing a frustrating waiting game.
Einarsson said: "It's very frustrating not being able to play, but I know people are working on it and we will see what happens.
"It is a strange rule because I was unemployed on December 1 when my contract in Norway expired and now they are not
allowing me to work.
"The FA have said that if FIFA say it is okay, then they will give me the green light.
"A player went from Norway to Holland and was allowed to play so why shouldn't I? It does seem strange.
"I think there is a chance and I'm hoping for the best.
"My contract finished last week and I am a Leeds player now. If I have to wait until January I have to wait, but I'm hopeful."
Einarsson admits he cannot wait to get started at Elland Road.
"It's a huge club," he enthused. "Leeds have many fans in Iceland and Norway.
"I've seen a few games and the level is good.
"The pace is higher than in Norway, where I've played for the last four years, and I'll have to adapt to that.
"I'm looking forward to the challenge and England should suit my playing style.
"I'm an attacking midfielder.
"I'm not a playmaker but I like to get forward and score goals and I was happy that I scored a few last
season."