Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Yorkshire Evening Post 29/11/06
United's defeat was on the cards
Burnley 2 Leeds United 1
By Phil Hay
Leeds United under Dennis Wise are starting to resemble a yo-yo.
Foxe leaves the field after being sent offUp one minute and down the next, with little to fill the space in between. The one near-certainty of his seven-match reign has been that defeat will follow victory, and vice-versa.Should last night's galling loss to Burnley precede a win over Barnsley on Saturday, as the present pattern would seem to predict, Wise can be content with a satisfactory week's work. But regardless of this weekend's events at Elland Road, United's manager is unlikely to feel any less bitter about the way in which three points went begging at Turf Moor.Burnley's stadium has not been a forgiving venue this season, and the club themselves are rarely seen taking prisoners, but Wise's players were giving little quarter to their Lancashire opponents until the game turned on the sudden dismissal of Hayden Foxe in the 52nd minute.The Australian defender was carrying a yellow card from a first-half foul on Steve Jones when he lost his footing as Wade Elliott curled a dangerous cross-field pass towards Burnley striker Andy Gray. Foxe, perhaps instinctively, stuck out his hand to divert the ball away from Gray, and referee Phil Dowd swiftly ordered him from the field for a second bookable offence.For almost an hour United had restrained their hosts comfortably, surviving a handful of near misses from long range but preventing Burnley from getting close enough to see the whites of Graham Stack's eyes.But by the 70th minute, 18 minutes after Foxe's dismissal, Leeds were 2-0 down and on the brink of defeat. As turning points go, the Australian's departure was especially costly.Foxe did not dispute either of his cautions, and the makeshift right-back was heading for the tunnel long before Dowd raised his red card, but Leeds will reflect on another game when little came their way from the man in the middle.Dowd was not solely to blame for United's defeat, but his reluctance to let the game flow affected the attempts of Wise's team to transform a solid defensive performance into a narrow victory.The Staffordshire official's judgement was best summed up by the first-half booking issued to Ian Westlake for diving after the midfielder's legs were chopped from under him on the edge of Burnley's box.There was nothing in Leeds' performance, though, to depress a manager who has previously seen the good, bad and ugly sides of his squad at Elland Road. United's opportunities during the 90 minutes were few, but for the all the pressure created by Burnley before Foxe's red card, their end product gave Stack little to worry about.The on-loan Reading goalkeeper was well beaten by a curling shot from Steve Jones that whistled beyond the post after half-an-hour, and he parried a low effort from Wade Elliott after a pre-planned free-kick earned the winger a sight of goal before the break.But Leeds' defence was calm and organised, and clearly improved by the addition of Ugo Ehiogu to Stack's protective line. The Middlesbrough centre-back was a surprising selection before kick-off, making his United debut in place of Matthew Kilgallon who Wise later revealed was carrying an ankle injury.Ehiogu stepped into the vacancy seamlessly, and the organisation of United's defence was unquestionable before the game swung Burnley's way in the 52nd minute.In recent weeks the signs have been that Kilgallon – still a youngster at 22 – would benefit from a well-earned rest, and a fit Ehiogu looks an ideal replacement should Wise decide to keep him in position.Ehiogu spoke last week of repairing United from back to front, and their last two fixtures have shown increasing defensive solidity, but the final part of a winning formula is still evading the players at Elland Road.Leeds are not incapable of producing chances and scoring goals, but they failed to seriously test the confidence of Burnley goalkeeper Danny Coyne until the game was lost.Their clear opportunities before the break both fell to Ian Moore, who had an early shot blocked by Coyne and sliced another wide of goal after benefiting from Robbie Blake's quick feet and vision.Burnley might have held the lead at the interval had Stack not tipped Jones' rising effort over the crossbar in the 40th minute, and Shaun Derry received a welcome reprieve three minutes after the break when Wayne Thomas' corner caught his head and smashed against Stack's post.But moments later, Foxe was sent from the field and Leeds were forced to adopt a policy of damage limitation.Jonathan Douglas replaced Foxe at right-back and Moore dropped on to the right wing, leaving Wise with the unappealing task of withdrawing Blake and introducing substitute Tresor Kandol as a lone striker.Kandol fought Burnley's defence as valiantly as he could, but the forward saw too little of the ball to make the most of his isolated position as the home side monopolised possession.The Claret-coloured water eventually broke United's dam in the 67th minute when the hugely-impressive Jones beat Douglas on the left wing and pelted a low cross into the six-yard box. An unfortunate half-clearance from Matt Heath drove the ball into the path of Gifton Noel-Williams, whose powerful finish gave Stack no chance.The goal gave Wise plenty to ponder, but before he could move to alter his side Burnley struck for a second time.Two minutes later, Thomas steered a low pass to the feet of Gray, and the striker's quick turn on the edge of the box gave him space to curl a left-foot shot round the dive of Stack and into the corner.United in their previous guises this season would have surrendered meekly, but it speaks volumes of Wise's work that his players showed the nerve to dominate the remaining 20 minutes.Burnley's defence took the strain until the last three minutes when a goal from substitute David Healy hushed the home support.The Northern Ireland forward collected a wonderful 40-yard pass from Stephen Crainey and beat Coyne from outside the box with a looping shot which appeared to take a deflection off Jon Harley.The goal gave United impetus and urgency, but the five minutes of injury-time allowed by Dowd ultimately contained no hidden reward.Wise, however, should feel inspiration rather than disappointment after a revealing and reassuring night. For him, his players and an increasingly positive group of supporters, Saturday's showdown with Barnsley cannot come quickly enough.
29 November 2006
Telegraph 29/11/06
Noel-Williams sparks timely Burnley win
By Peter Gardner
Last Updated: 1:50am GMT 29/11/2006
Burnley (0) 2 Leeds United (0) 1
Two goals in two minutes by Burnley ended the resistance of 10-man Leeds United, who had defender Hayden Foxe sent off after receiving a second yellow card at Turf Moor last night.
Gifton Noel-Williams scored his first goal in eight games in the 67th minute of an absorbing encounter, and Andy Gray confirmed home superiority, two minutes later, with the second against his former club to give Burnley's promotion hopes a boost.
However, the home side still had defending to be done, because David Healy, the Leeds substitute, pulled a goal back three minutes from time.
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Burnley, beaten at home by the Championship favourites Birmingham on Saturday, asserted their authority from the start by using the flanks to their advantage, with Steve Jones and Wade Elliott constantly stretching Leeds with their skill and pace.
Burnley started the second half still on top, too, but it took a stroke of luck for them to take the lead; a long cross by Jon Harley out on the left, bounced off a defender back towards Noel-Williams, who finished with ease.
Two minutes later Gray turned sweetly before scoring with equal aplomb beyond the goalkeeper Graham Stack.
The introduction of Healy gave Leeds fresh impetus and his well-struck goal after splendid work by Stephen Crainey caused a few home flutters, but justice was ultimately done.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Yorkshire Evening Post 25/11/06
Devon delight for dynamic Leeds
Plymouth Argyle 1 Leeds United 2
By Phil Hay
On the last occasion before yesterday that Leeds United claimed three points away from home, Kevin Blackwell and Paul Sturrock were occupying opposite dug-outs at Sheffield Wednesday.
It is a measure of their wait for a victory away from Elland Road that neither man is still in situ. The events of Hillsborough on August 27 are little more than a distant memory after all that has gone between, but United's players can stop counting days after a priceless victory at Home Park yesterday.Goals in either half from Robbie Blake and Eddie Lewis inspired a win which Leeds unquestionable deserved, and one that should drive confidence through every member of Dennis Wise's squad.United were dominant and dynamic, free from the nervous shackles that last weekend's 3-0 defeat to Southampton might have placed around their ankles. Wise's job since arriving at Elland Road has been to convince his team that they are good enough to fend off relegation. On the evidence of yesterday's victory, United's players are beginning to believe his message.False dawns have come and gone already this season, and Wise will treat his side's 2-1 defeat of Plymouth with caution ahead of a difficult trip to Burnley on Tuesday night. But, on a gloomy day in Devon, Leeds showed a level of resilience surpassing anything seen in their previous performances this season.At half-time, the assumption among United's supporters might have been that their team was preparing to implode. Bojan Djordjic had levelled Blake's opening goal five minutes before the interval, giving Plymouth parity after a first half in which Ian Holloway's players were given the run around.But United restored their narrow lead with a 61st minute effort from Eddie Lewis, and the visitors' backbone remained rigid during the remaining half hour.Wise is still struggling to place his finger on United's most effective formation, and his line-up at Home Park was another experiment with the players at his disposal.Geoff Horsfield and David Healy were dropped, and the 4-3-1-2 system employed by Wise for three successive games was abandoned in favour of a four-man midfield, giving Ian Westlake and Ian Moore the chance to start.Southampton's heavy victory had largely been the result of poor finishing from Leeds, but Wise had barely settled in the visiting dug out yesterday when Blake finished off their first chance after two minutes.Moore unsettled Plymouth's defence by nudging Hasney Aljofree away from a long clearance, and a quick through ball gave Eddie Lewis space on the left side of Plymouth's box.The American's low cut-back skipped past Moore, but Blake ran in at the back post to side-foot the ball into the net.Plymouth were fortunate to avoid a second goal when Moore's shot in the ninth minute struck the woodwork, and United were denied a clear penalty when referee Dean Whitestone failed to penalise a blatant foul on Westlake.The chances – and United's goal – lit up a first half which was littered with fouls from Argyle.Leeds' free-kick count soared into double figures inside the first 20 minutes, but the disruption did not prevent them from dictating the pace of a game which flowed relentlessly towards goalkeeper Luke McCormick before half-time.Wise's players bullied Plymouth incessantly, punching regular holes in their defence and at times falling one touch short of a second goal.Argyle were unable to respond effectively, although Barry Hayles scuffed a shot wide of Graham Stack's post after teasing space out of Hayden Foxe, and the lack organisation among Ian Holloway's side was glaring. Their poor shape was a direct result of the quality of United's passing, which left the home defence in disarray but, against the backdrop of a toothless performance, Plymouth restored parity with a soft goal five minutes before half-time.Matt Heath conceded a dangerous free-kick by clattering into the back of Barry Hayles, and Tony Capaldi's curling delivery was headed home by Djordjic, lurking amongst a crowd of players.Djordjic had been removed from Plymouth's transfer list by Holloway earlier in the week, and his goal was vindication of his manager's decision. Holloway would have been happier still had Djordjic's wonderful lob in injury time sneaked under the crossbar rather than landing on the roof of Stack's net.The late concession was United's cue to panic, but the confidence developing under Wise was evident as the visitors claimed a crucial win 16 minutes into a competitive but uninspiring second half.Moore brightened the gloom by stretching Plymouth's defence with a brilliant pass to the feet of Lewis, who lost his marker and sized up McCormick before slipping a low finish into the net.Leeds were forced to withstand a late flurry, and Stack repelled the best of Plymouth's chances with a low save from substitute Luke Chadwick, but an outstanding show of resistance during four minutes of injury time was fittingly rewarded by the final whistle.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Leedsunited.com 24/11/06
TRES-BIEN!
New United loan man Tresor Kandol says he just can't wait to get started with the club.
Tres, who has initially joined on loan until January 1 with a view to a permanent move, made the mad dash to Leeds from London on Thursday night in readiness for a first training session with his new team-mates.
The prolific marksman only completed the formalities of his move north within the last hour before the loan deadline, and the 25-year-old is relishing the prospect of throwing his weight behind the club's battle in the Championship.
"It all happened very quickly," Tres told leedsunited.com.
"I sort of knew that something would come up, but didn't know what and didn't know when.
"It was one of those where you are wanting something to happen, but don't think it actually will.
"When the call came about Leeds I wasn't at home so I wasn't even ready for it! It was a case of getting things together quickly."
Tresor has attracted a host of admirers this season with a haul of 13 goals from 21 appearances. He has scored seven in his last three outings.
The six-foot one marksman joined Barnet at the turn of the year after a loan spell at Darlington. He had netted seven goals in 14 appearances for Conference outfit Dagenham before his loan spell with the Quakers and admits he has waited for his chance.
"I've been waiting for a while for the right move to come along," he explained.
"I've been up and down and played at a few places, but this is the right move at the right time.
"When you look where you have come from and something like this comes along...fingers crossed, this is the right time.
"I came up on Thursday night and just couldn't wait to meet everyone and get started."
Tresor did feature at Elland Road earlier this season when he came on as a second half substitute during the 3-1 Carling Cup defeat of Barnet.
Two Ian Moore goals, pictured, and one from Robbie Blake ensured United a smooth passage through, but Barnet bagged a late consolation and emerged with plenty of credit for their second half efforts.
"The first thing that struck me that night was outside the stadium and you don't realise how big it is," recalled Tresor.
"The whole history of the club excites me.
"That night I just couldn't wait to get on. I know Elland Road wasn't full, but there was still something about it.
"We knew going to Elland Road wouldn't be easy and we did well in the second half. We scored and we kept going.
"It was a good experience."
Sky 23/11/06
Whites land Bees striker
By James Pearson
Leeds United beefed up their strike force on loan deadline day with the capture of Barnet hit-man Tresor Kandol.
The Whites have struggled for goals of late and with Richard Cresswell back on the sidelines with a knee injury, Dennis Wise has moved for Kandol.
The 25-year-old former Luton, Bournemouth and Darlington striker has linked up with Leeds on loan until January with a view to a permanent move.
Kandol has revealed it was a wrench to leave Underhill, but hopes the club's fans understand his reasons for switching to The Championship.
"I am very sorry to be leaving but I am sure the fans will appreciate that this is a good career move for me at my age," he told the club's official website.
"It is good for me and it is good for the club - hopefully I will settle there."
Bees chairman Tony Kleanthous was keen to retain Kandol, but felt the deal was in the best interests of the League Two outfit.
"In the end, Tresor felt the opportunity was too good to turn down, and I reluctantly had to agree that it could be in his best interests," he said.
The arrival of Kandol at Elland Road is the second capture of the day following the loan arrival of experienced Middlesbrough stopper Ugo Ehiogu.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Sky 21/11/06
Wise warning to Sullivan
By James Pearson
Leeds United's new boss Dennis Wise has informed experienced keeper Neil Sullivan he is now the club's third choice shot-stopper.
Sullivan was a regular under ex-boss Kevin Blackwell, although Tony Warner's arrival on loan brought competition for the number one jersey.
Wise now has Reading's Graeme Stack also on loan, leaving Sullivan well down The Whites' pecking order.
Leeds' new manager will not stand in Sullivan's way should he wish to seek pastures new, although he could be handed a chance in the New Year if Stack and Warner's deals are not extended.
"I've told Sully that, whatever condition he's in, he's going to be third-choice goalkeeper," Wise told the Yorkshire Evening Post.
"He should be looking to get a number one shirt and, if I'm being honest, I'm looking for a younger, more athletic goalkeeper.
"It's his choice, and he has to do it for himself. He can be a second here, and a really good second for me, or he can go and play in the lower divisions."
Meanwhile, on loan Middlesbrough winger Adam Johnson has returned to The Riverside following a loan spell at Elland Road. The 19-year-old, who was brought in by caretaker boss John Carver, made five Championship appearances for the West Yorkshire outfit.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Sporting Life 20/11/06
BLACKWELL PLANS LEEDS ACTION
By Mark Walker, PA Sport
Former manager Kevin Blackwell is preparing for a court battle with Leeds in his fight for compensation.
Blackwell, who led Leeds to the brink of the Barclays Premiership last season, believes he has no option other than to sue the Yorkshire club after he was sacked two months ago.
Leeds chairman Ken Bates has declined to enter into compensation talks with Blackwell's representatives, the League Managers Association.
"We would have preferred to keep it out of court," LMA chief executive John Barnwell said.
"But it would appear Leeds don't want to negotiate a settlement.
"Mr Bates has said Kevin Blackwell was not dismissed because of poor results but for negative comments made in the press about the club's finances, but having looked closely at this case we feel we have no option other than to put the matter in the hands of our lawyers."
Leeds issued a statement which read: "In response to suggestions that former manager Kevin Blackwell is preparing to sue the club for wrongful dismissal, Leeds United can confirm that the matter is currently in the hands of our lawyers.
"No further comment will be made at this stage."
Blackwell, who has remained tight-lipped since being sacked on September 20, is understood to have been stunned by the manner of his dismissal.
The former Sheffield United coach had steered Leeds to Coca-Cola Championship safety in his first full season in charge before narrowly missing out on promotion last season.
But the 47-year-old came under increasing pressure this time around as his side lost momentum and poor early results added to the fans' frustration following the 3-0 play-off final defeat to Watford.
"We have instructed Kevin Blackwell very clearly to make no comment at all," Barnwell added.
"We had to find out what the comments he made in the press were and having seen them the matter has been passed onto our legal team.
"It does not necessarily mean it has to go to court.
"There may be a re-think by somebody who realises they have gone about this the wrong way - but we're not too optimistic."
Blackwell, who succeeded Eddie Gray in June 2004 after spending 12 months as coach, was sacked after a 1-0 defeat at Coventry saw them slump to second-bottom in the table - their lowest ever league position.
Blackwell, a goalkeeper in his playing days with Boston, Scarborough, Notts County, Huddersfield and Plymouth, first arrived as coach in the summer of 2003 after being recommended to then manager Peter Reid.
But Reid lasted just eight months in charge and when Eddie Gray was sacked just six months after that, Blackwell became the club's fifth manager in under two years.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Independent 19/11/06
Leeds United 0 Southampton 3: Rasiak leaves Leeds reeling
By Dan Murphy at Elland Road
Published: 19 November 2006
Leeds United have not secured a single point this season from games in which they have conceded the first goal. Yesterday, for the 13th time, they fell behind and duly continued this miserable trend as Grzegorz Rasiak's ninth and 10th League goals of the season, either side of Rudi Skacel's first, gave this scoreline a lop-sided appearance.
In fact, until Skacel was presented with the ball, unmarked, on the edge of the six-yard area midway through the second half, Leeds had actually been the better team. But from that moment onwards, the degree of resilience Leeds had shown since falling behind evaporated, as the Championship's leakiest defence conceded three goals or more for the seventh time this season. "Our problem has been dominating games and not taking our chances so it was nice today to see some of those chances going in," said George Burley, the Southampton manager.
Southampton took the lead when Raziak met a Gareth Bale cross that Andrew Surman flicked on. The Pole measured a header back across goal that sailed over Graham Stack and dropped under the bar.
Following Leeds' best period of the game after half-time, Southampton made the game safe when John Viáfara delivered a low cross and the ball somehow found its way to an unmarked Skacel at the far post.
A few minutes later Skacel's corner found Raziak unmarked and he headed home a third. It left Dennis Wise, the new Leeds manager, with much to ponder.
"The second goal really killed us," said Wise. "At 1-0 down we were actually the better team. I couldn't fault the effort but we are still making silly errors."
Leeds United have not secured a single point this season from games in which they have conceded the first goal. Yesterday, for the 13th time, they fell behind and duly continued this miserable trend as Grzegorz Rasiak's ninth and 10th League goals of the season, either side of Rudi Skacel's first, gave this scoreline a lop-sided appearance.
In fact, until Skacel was presented with the ball, unmarked, on the edge of the six-yard area midway through the second half, Leeds had actually been the better team. But from that moment onwards, the degree of resilience Leeds had shown since falling behind evaporated, as the Championship's leakiest defence conceded three goals or more for the seventh time this season. "Our problem has been dominating games and not taking our chances so it was nice today to see some of those chances going in," said George Burley, the Southampton manager.
Southampton took the lead when Raziak met a Gareth Bale cross that Andrew Surman flicked on. The Pole measured a header back across goal that sailed over Graham Stack and dropped under the bar.
Following Leeds' best period of the game after half-time, Southampton made the game safe when John Viáfara delivered a low cross and the ball somehow found its way to an unmarked Skacel at the far post.
A few minutes later Skacel's corner found Raziak unmarked and he headed home a third. It left Dennis Wise, the new Leeds manager, with much to ponder.
"The second goal really killed us," said Wise. "At 1-0 down we were actually the better team. I couldn't fault the effort but we are still making silly errors."

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Yorkshire Evening Post 17/11/06
Wise eyes Ifill move
by Phil Hay
Leeds United manager Dennis Wise today confirmed his interest in Sheffield United midfielder Paul Ifill.
Wise has approached the Premiership club over Ifill's availability, and the Leeds boss is hoping to force through a deal before this month's loan deadline.Football League clubs will be prevented from completing any loan agreements from 5pm on November 23 until the transfer window opens on January 1, and Wise's attempts to secure Ifill have been hampered by the 27-year-old's international commitments.Ifill, who worked with Wise at Millwall, is in the Caribbean with the Barbados national squad, but he has not featured regularly for the Blades this season, and Bramall Lane boss Neil Warnock is thought to be open the possibility of a deal with Leeds. Wise said: "Paul Ifill is a player I'm looking at. He's gone on international duty to Barbados, and that is one of the reasons why we haven't brought him in."Last week we tried but he was slightly injured. Now he's gone to Barbados for 10 days so it would have been rather stupid to bring him in and waste the time."But there's a certain date we have to get him in by, and we may not be able to do it be then."Wise is also set to maintain his interest in Southampton's Darren Powell despite seeing an approach for the defender rejected.United's boss had hoped to sign Powell on loan with a view to a permanent transfer in January, but Saints boss George Burley refused to consider Wise's cash offer.Powell, however, is out of contract at the end of this season, and Wise is likely to compete for the 30-year-old's signature next summer if Southampton refuse to reconsider.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

New pages uploaded at mightyleeds.co.uk

Major rewrite: 1909/10 season


Opening day win with Irish imports but a terrible autumn leaves City deep in trouble - A grim struggle against having to apply for re-election ends happily but it was a close thing


Read the full story at


Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Wise moulding side - Cresswell
Leeds striker Richard Cresswell believes manager Dennis Wise is slowly beginning to mould the team in his style.
Leeds have won two and lost two since Wise took control from caretaker-manager John Carver last month, but turned in an impressive display against Colchester to bounce back from back-to-back defeats.
"It was probably our best performance of the season and hopefully we can build on that," Cresswell told the club's official website.
"That's how the manager played and how he wants us to play. It's rubbing off."
Cresswell's second-half header was his first goal since February with the striker struggling with knee ligament damage since sustaining the injury against Watford. "It's been tough," he added. "I've been out seven months and it's hard to get the fitness back. I'm just pleased to get on the scoresheet. Hopefully I can carry on now and score some more."

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Yorkshire Post 11/11/06
Wise move to bring back Smith
Leeds United manager joins the race to sign former Kop hero as squad rebuilding picks up pace
RICHARD SUTCLIFFE
LEEDS UNITED have joined the race to sign Alan Smith with an audacious attempt to bring the Manchester United striker back to Elland Road on loan.
Dennis Wise moved quickly yesterday after learning that Sir Alex Ferguson would be willing to allow the 26-year-old to go out on loan after receiving an inquiry from Cardiff City. Manager Wise is desperate to bolster a side sitting second bottom in the Championship and the capture of Smith, who was a hugely popular figure with supporters before making a controversial £7m switch to Old Trafford in May 2004, would be a massive coup for the strugglers.Sources in Manchester have indicated that the Leeds-born striker is not keen on a move to Wales but would welcome the chance to return to a club for whom he made 228 appearances and scored 56 goals.Wise, who continued his Elland Road revolution yesterday by telling former captain Paul Butler to find another club, said: "Alan Smith would be someone I would be interested in. You know what you are getting with him and that he will give you everything that he can possibly give you."It would be a boost for the team, let alone the club and the fans. We are talking about a quality player who has done it at all levels. I am sure there will be 20 other clubs interested in Alan Smith, maybe other teams in the Premiership."He is the type of player we would love to have because he is a fantastic player. I want a certain standard of player, though sometimes you can't get players that you would like to get. I would like John Terry but I am not going to get him."Smith enjoyed an explosive start to his Leeds career by scoring with his very first touch in front of the Kop at Anfield to help United to a 3-1 victory in 1998. The striker was a leading member of David O'Leary's swashbuckling side that took Leeds to the semi-finals of the Champions League and UEFA Cup but had to be sold following relegation. Smith's decision to opt for United's bitter rivals turned the fans against him just a few weeks after they had carried the striker off the field shoulder-high at the end of the club's final home game in the Premiership. A broken leg sustained in the FA Cup defeat to Liverpool last February brought an abrupt end to his season and after returning to action last month, Smith is still lacking fitness, according to his manager.On Cardiff's interest, Ferguson said: "They phoned on Thursday morning and because of the fact we are no longer in the League Cup, I think a short-term loan would be ideal for him to get games."I put that to him. I do not think he has spoken to (manager) Dave Jones, but he has spoken to someone at Cardiff and is uncertain as to what he should do. It is an option to play games and that is the main thinking on our part because we are not in the League Cup."Should Leeds's audacious bid come off, Smith will return to a club in danger of being relegated for the second time in just three years. Wise is determined to halt the slide by moving players on and Butler was told that he is free to join another club.The 35-year-old had the Leeds captaincy taken off him a fortnight ago by Wise who said: "I have told Paul he is not needed at the club and can find himself another club. I told him this morning (Friday) and I think he was half expecting it."Paul is not part of my plans, he knows my reasons and that is that. "I have had a chat with him and I am looking to bring in one or two centre halves. There has to be some changes and I need to get some out."Butler seems certain to follow Sean Gregan out of Elland Road after the 32-year-old defender moved to Oldham Athletic on loan this week.Wise added: "It is nothing against Paul or Sean, but they are just not in my plans. I can only be honest with them both. "If I really do need him at the last minute, I would expect him to be a professional and do the right thing but at the present moment I do not need him."On the attempts to re-mould his squad and bring new faces in to add to loanees Graham Stack and Matt Heath, the Leeds manager added: "A lot of hard work has been put in to try and bring some new faces in. Unfortunately, it has not happened but we are still trying."

Monday, November 06, 2006

Leedsunited.com 6/11/06
A BIG KICK
Manager Dennis Wise admitted Saturday's 3-2 derby defeat at Barnsley was a "big kick in the teeth" after two second half goals earned the home side three valuable points.
United had enjoyed the better of the first period and, after Martin Devaney gave the hosts the lead, goals from Shaun Derry and Robbie Blake turned the tables before the interval.
But the home side struck twice from distance in the second half to send United tumbling back to 23rd in the Coca-Cola Championship.
"It was a big kick in the teeth," said Dennis. "I thought we'd done extremely well in first half, but in the second half we made individual mistakes and those poor mistakes cost us.
"We deserved to be in front at half-time. I was disappointed with the first goal we conceded, but we got ourselves back into it.
"I wasn't happy with the goals we conceded in the second half either, people have to get a lot closer. They know that, we were speaking for a quite a while after the game."
It was a full 40 minutes before Dennis emerged from the dressing room to face the media after the Oakwell defeat and the manager says he is under no illusions about the task ahead.
"There's a lot of things wrong," conceded the boss.
"We've got to pick them up and get them to play with confidence because at this moment there's not a lot of confidence there. And we've got to stop conceding goals.
"We're well aware of how big the job is, but it doesn't phase us. We know it's a difficult job, these players are lacking confidence and need help.
"We need fresh faces as well, but at this moment it is proving difficult. We are trying and yes, there will be some movement.
"I hope the players are just as upset as me and Gus are. I'm disappointed whenever we lose and especially in a Yorkshire derby.
"We need to pick ourselves up, do some hard work and get this team doing the right things at the right time."
Independent 5/11/06
Barnsley 3 Leeds Utd 2: Howard enjoys generosity of Leeds
By Dan Murphy at Oakwell Stadium
Published: 05 November 2006
Barnsley moved above Leeds United at the foot of the Championship yesterday after an entertaining Yorkshire derby between two teams as inept without the ball as they were enterprising with it.
Perhaps that was only to be expected from the League's two most porous defences but there was also much to admire in the creative work of Barnsley's Martin McIndoe and Leeds' Robbie Blake.
Leeds have now conceded 16 goals in their last four away fixtures. After dominating the first half they fell apart in the second, allowing Barnsley to come from behind and claim their first win in nine games. All three Barnsley goals were eminently preventable from a Leeds perspective.
"There wasn't much in it in the first half but I thought we were by far the better side after that," said Andy Ritchie, Barnsley's manager and a former Leeds player and coach.
Graham Stack's flap at a cross by McIndoe led to the first goal. Martin Devaney was able to control before shooting low into the unguarded net.
Leeds deservedly equalised when Shaun Derry met Blake's corner. Then David Healy's pass fed Eddie Lewis, and his cross set up the classy Blake.
McIndoe's equaliser was explosive - he advanced unchallenged before unleashing a powerful drive into the bottom corner. Yet more substandard defensive work gave Barnsley the winner. This time Brian Howard was the beneficiary. Allowed to work a shooting opportunity from 18 yards, he curled a shot into the far corner.
"We did extremely well in the first half but in the second half there were too many individual mistakes," Dennis Wise, the Leeds manager, said. "There are a lot of things wrong at the club but we know what has to be done. There will be some transfer movement in the near future because the current players are not doing what I want them to."
Barnsley moved above Leeds United at the foot of the Championship yesterday after an entertaining Yorkshire derby between two teams as inept without the ball as they were enterprising with it.
Perhaps that was only to be expected from the League's two most porous defences but there was also much to admire in the creative work of Barnsley's Martin McIndoe and Leeds' Robbie Blake.
Leeds have now conceded 16 goals in their last four away fixtures. After dominating the first half they fell apart in the second, allowing Barnsley to come from behind and claim their first win in nine games. All three Barnsley goals were eminently preventable from a Leeds perspective.
"There wasn't much in it in the first half but I thought we were by far the better side after that," said Andy Ritchie, Barnsley's manager and a former Leeds player and coach.
Graham Stack's flap at a cross by McIndoe led to the first goal. Martin Devaney was able to control before shooting low into the unguarded net.
Leeds deservedly equalised when Shaun Derry met Blake's corner. Then David Healy's pass fed Eddie Lewis, and his cross set up the classy Blake.
McIndoe's equaliser was explosive - he advanced unchallenged before unleashing a powerful drive into the bottom corner. Yet more substandard defensive work gave Barnsley the winner. This time Brian Howard was the beneficiary. Allowed to work a shooting opportunity from 18 yards, he curled a shot into the far corner.
"We did extremely well in the first half but in the second half there were too many individual mistakes," Dennis Wise, the Leeds manager, said. "There are a lot of things wrong at the club but we know what has to be done. There will be some transfer movement in the near future because the current players are not doing what I want them to."