Showing posts from January, 2005
Leeds United Football Club - Relief For Blackwell United boss Kevin Blackwell was a relieved man as his team proved to new chairman Ken Bates that they are fighting for him in the 1-0 win over Stoke. Leeds became embroiled in a tense battle at the Britannia Stadium and it took an own goal from hapless defender Wayne Thomas, who sliced David Healy's cross into his own net, to separate the teams and give the Bates era a winning start. Blackwell was just pleased his side were able to show that the pressure of the last few weeks is off them. "I am glad today is out of the way," he said. "There's been so many things going on in people heads this week. There was talk among the players about the situation and I pulled them before the game and said we get on with it. "This is a brand new era, we can start to look forward as a football club and I want to take all of you with me. And if we can do that, brilliant." Blackwell says that despite the pros
This is me giving ken Bates what for, at least until he actually arrives 
Sport Bates sounds dinner gong for Blackwell Stoke City 0 Leeds United 1 By Jonathan Wilson 24 January 2005 Kevin Blackwell is probably right when he speaks of Leeds lying six points off the play-off positions as nigh-on miraculous. "In July the club was just me and Gary Kelly," the Leeds manager said after Saturday's drab victory, making a scarcely veiled pitch to keep his job. The financial problems that threatened to send Leeds into administration may have retreated with Ken Bates' takeover, but while the club can now, to use Blackwell's phrase, "stop looking over our shoulders", his own position has been called into doubt. Bates has made clear in the past that he does not believe former goalkeepers make good managers. A dinner meeting later this week should clear things up in the short-term, but Blackwell's contribution to Leeds' survival should not be underestimated. "I think I'm good enough to go all the way as a manag
Cheery, cheerful, happy go lucky, affable ... delete any words that do not apply
Times Online - Newspaper Edition The ego has landed ROB HUGHES He made millions from selling Chelsea, but life out of the limelight does not suit Ken Bates, as Leeds will soon discover. The ego has returned. While others were sleeping at 2.27am on Friday, the lawyer for Ken Bates was tying up the £10m deal that gives the former Chelsea owner all the trouble and strife and limelight he craves as chairman of Leeds United. With typical acerbic brevity, he answered the question of whether he plans to bring his old mate Dennis Wise in as team manager. “A load of b******s,” said Chairman Ken. He’s back: 73 years young, offensive, blunt, supposedly open yet working in the dark, and taking on the challenge that cows other men. Rescue Leeds on a £10m outlay? It sounds as credible as buying a derelict Chelsea for £1 and selling your stake 21 years later to a Russian oil billionaire for £17m. Reworking the Leeds insolvency — reclaiming the land, the stadium, the training ground and t
David Healy gets the treatment from the Potters hard men ... where the hell is Duberry when you actually need him?
Leeds United Football Club - Matchreport Stoke City vs Leeds United Pre-Match United boss Kevin Blackwell was able to call upon the services of fit again Brian Deane. The 36-year-old missed the previous four games with a shoulder injury and his height upfront was what Leeds lacked most in those games. Also back in the side was midfielder Sean Gregan, missing from the draw with Cardiff with a bug that had been sweeping through the camp. He lined up in a three man midfield that also contained Danny Pugh and Jermaine Wright. There were changes too in defence where Clarke Carlisle came in for Matthew Kilgallon. Kilgallon is suffering from an ankle injury which gave Carlisle his first start since completing a one match suspension. With Scott Carson having completed his move to Liverpool, loan signing Paul Harrison, who made the reverse trip from Anfield, took up his place on the bench. The Match Both teams struggled to get into any sort of rhythm in the first quarter of
This is my shoulder ... where has my chip gone? 
Leeds Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More Forward With Ken EXCLUSIVE By PAUL DEWS FORMER chairman Trevor Birch today branded new Leeds United chief Ken Bates as the man to take the club forward. Birch, who stepped down last March when Gerald Krasner's consortium took over at Elland Road, knows Bates well after the pairing worked together at Chelsea. And the popular ex-United chairman reckons his old Stamford Bridge boss is the man to drive Leeds forward again. "I think Ken will be a good man for Leeds United," said Birch, pictured left. "He's a successful man and he hasn't come to Leeds to fail. "He will be giving it 120 per cent to get the club back into the Premier League. "I think this will have taken 20 years off him – he'll have renewed energy at the age of 73 – and you won't find anyone with as much enthusiasm about the game." Birch is still regarded as a hero by many United followers
All hail me 
Guardian Unlimited Football | News | Bates takeover offers hope for suffering Leeds Before anyone hails Ken Bates as the man who will transform Leeds United's fortunes it is worth remembering that before Roman Abramovich arrived at Chelsea they were around £80m in debt and confronted by the possibility of administration. Despite having transformed the club in his time at Stamford Bridge it was done at considerable cost so only those with selective memories will cast him as a saviour at Elland Road. Bates is entitled, however, to believe yesterday's £10m takeover has not only stopped the rot but offered hope. Leeds had been hurtling towards administration and a 10-point penalty that would have left a financially shipwrecked club third from bottom of the Championship and contemplating relegation to the third division. There is no telling what might have happened after that but the long-suffering Leeds supporters will no longer have to consider the possibility of a regular Y
Trust me, my boy 
Telegraph | Sport | Bates back to revive fallen Leeds By Christopher Davies (Filed: 22/01/2005) Ken Bates, the former owner of Chelsea, yesterday made a remarkable return to football as chairman of Leeds United, insisting that he wants to lead the club back to their former glories and relishes "one more challenge". Bates, 73, has bought a 50 per cent stake in the club for £10 million. He will head a four-strong board which will also include Peter Lorimer, the Leeds legend, who will continue in his role as director and point of contact for the fans. The takeover should eliminate the threat of administration for Leeds, who were top of the Premiership as recently as three years ago. Bates ended a 10-month exile from football after leaving Chelsea, which he had sold to Roman Abramovich for £17 million. Bates said yesterday: "I'm delighted to be stepping up to the mantel at such a fantastic club. I recognise Leeds United are a great club that have fallen on ha
Sport Revealed: the ex-players and managers still owed £6.85m By Nick Harris 22 January 2005 The financial mess inherited by Ken Bates at Leeds United is so convoluted that the former Chelsea chairman has not yet been able to buy the majority share of the club he wanted. New details about Leeds' crisis have been obtained by The Independent, including the particulars of debts and future liabilities to former managers, players, the tax authorities, the outgoing board, institutional bond-holders and the owners of Elland Road. Sources close to the club have revealed that Bates was prevented from buying more than 50 per cent of Leeds because of technicalities arising from the £60m loan acquired during Peter Ridsdale's chairmanship Bates had hoped to buy 51 per cent for £10m. His marginally lesser stake will make no practical difference to his control at Leeds - the structure of the deal has guaranteed that - but the reason he was thwarted is illustrative of Leeds' p
Six good men and true... 

'I'll do same for Leeds that I did for Chelsea' says Bates - 22/1/05

James Lawton Chief Sports Writer Ken Bates last night spelled out his improbable dream for Leeds United. "It's quite simple really," the 73-year-old maverick of English football said, "I'm going to do for Leeds United what I did for Chelsea. "You know what that was," Bates said. "I bought them for £1 and left them with the best ground in the country and £150m worth of players. Obviously, it's not going to happen overnight but I know what I can do - and I know what I've done before. I'll sell Leeds off when I'm 94 and then sit back and enjoy the rest of my life." Bates said it was time for Leeds to turn their back on the recent past, when the former chairman Peter Ridsdale tried to buy his way into the élite of European football, then watched the financial foundations of the club break apart. Details revealed yesterday showed the extent of past misadventures, with still unresolved debts to players like Danny Mills (approaching £
Glad it's all over. glad it's all over... 
Leeds United Football Club - Krasner: Bates Is Right For Leeds Outgoing United chairman Gerald Krasner says Ken Bates no-nonsense approach towards business helped convince him he was the right man for the club. Lawyers worked throughout the night to get the deal done as soon as possible and at 2.27am on Friday morning, everything was complete. Krasner outlined the speed at which Ken Bates completed his takeover at Elland Road, saying: "We met Ken Bates on Monday in London and discussed at length the outline of the deal that was necessary for Leeds United. "We shook hands on it and the board backed it unanimously on Tuesday. We got him into Leeds on Wednesday without anybody knowing and this morning it was concluded. "I have to pay tribute to Ken because he has moved one iota from the handshake we had on Monday." Krasner did reveal that a number of other parties made a late play to try and gain control of the club, but having been involved in lengthy neg

Bates returns with £10m takeover deal for Leeds - Times 21/1/05

Times Online - Sport Bates returns with £10m takeover deal for Leeds By Ashling O'Connor KEN BATES, the former chairman of Chelsea, was last night poised for a dramatic return to football by buying control of Leeds United, the debt-ridden Coca-Cola Championship club. Bates, 73, was in talks yesterday with the Leeds board and, as he boarded a train for London, rumours abounded that he had agreed a deal. Bates, now based in Monaco, is believed to have offered about £10 million in cash for a 51 per cent stake in the club and the position of chairman. To acquire such a majority he would need to buy out Simon Morris and Melvyn Levy, two of the directors, whose shareholdings together make 51 per cent. Leeds would only confirm that the club was considering an offer of investment from Bates. There is still a rival offer on the table from a local business consortium led by Norman Stubbs and backed by Allan Leighton, the City financier and former Leeds deputy chairman. “We are sti
Same as the old boss... 
BBC SPORT | Football | My Club | Leeds United | Lorimer welcomes Bates takeover Leeds legend Peter Lorimer has welcomed Ken Bates' £10m takeover of the club, saying the former Chelsea chairman is "the right man for the job". Lorimer was a member of the board which had to deal with the club's huge debts and will stay on in the new era. "The board did a great job knocking £80m off the debts but now the club has to go forward and I'm sure Ken is the right man," he said. "I'm sure he knows what is needed and what to do about the finances." The news will be a relief to everyone at the club, who are 14th in the Championship and were in danger of going into administration and being deducted 10 points. "The team has been rebuilt and we are moving ahead," he said. "The Leeds fans should thank the board. There have been a lot of sleepless nights." Lorimer's former team-mate Norman Hunter was similarly relieve
Look over there while I carefully insinuate this delicate little blade ever so gently between your ribs ... nice knowing you, son, always remember ... IT'S JUST BUSINESS 

Ken Bates Factfile - LeedsUtdMad 20/1/05

LeedsUtdMAD - the definitive Leeds United website. Independent news and stats from Ken Bates Factfile Story by Kevin Markey ANYONE who buys a business for £1 and sells it 21 years later for a personal profit of £16,999,999 is obviously no mug. Factfile on Ken Bates.... 1931: Born December 4 in Ealing, West London. Made his personal fortune from a ready-mix concrete business and dairy farming and was briefly chairman of Oldham in the 1960s, as well as buying control of Wigan in 1981. 1982: Bought Chelsea Football Club for £1, albeit taking on significant debts in the process. 1985: The Football Association and the Greater London Council rejected his proposals for electrified fencing to deter hooligans. 1986: Joined Football League management committee and submitted planning application to rebuild Stamford Bridge as a new stadium, rather than an opposing bid by Marler Estates to build flats. 1991: Chelsea fined £105k for alleged illegal payments to players.
BBC SPORT | Football | My Club | Leeds United | Leeds and Bates in takeover talk Leeds have confirmed they are in talks with former Chelsea chairman Ken Bates with a view to him investing in the debt-ridden Elland Road club. Sebastien Sainsbury had been close to a takeover of the Championship side but withdrew his £25m offer last week. Leeds spokesman Bryan Morris confirmed: "We are still talking to all consortia and Mr Bates is one of those. "No deal has been finalised, but as soon as negotiations are concluded we will issue a further statement." Bates stepped down as Chelsea chairman in March last year following Roman Abramovich's £140m takeover of the club. In May, he made a proposal to invest £10m in Sheffield Wednesday, but this was rejected by the club. Administration threat Sainsbury, great grandson of the founder of the supermarket chain, had been trying to buy the cash-strapped club since October. But his efforts failed after he revealed
Leeds United Football Club - Looking To Make The Difference Returning United duo Seth Johnson and Eirik Bakke are hoping they can provide that bit of extra quality the club needs to start climbing the Championship table again. The midfield pairing have just started their playing comebacks after recovering from cruciate ligament injuries and are on course to be available for first team selection again in mid-February. After spending a frustrating last eight months on the sidelines the pair want to return to a side that's looking to get into the play-offs and not merely survive in the Championship. Former England under-21 international Seth believes a top six finish is still possible. "We can definitely still do it," he said, "just look at what Crystal Palace did last season. I think they were right near the bottom weren't they, "If you look at us over Christmas we put a good run together and we shot up the league a bit and I think whoever gets a
Leeds United Football Club - Carson Bound For Anfield United's under-21 international Scott Carson is undergoing a medical this morning after an undisclosed fee was agreed with Liverpool for the keeper. Liverpool won a two horse race with Chelsea also interested in the 19-year-old but Liverpool was always the player's first choice once it became clear he was not going to agree a new deal at Elland Road. Carson also made it clear he would prefer to move to Anfield with his desire to play first team football being more important to him than financial reward. United spokesman Bryan Morris said: “We wish Scott the very best at his new club. He has proven himself to be a top class keeper during his time at Leeds United and we are sure he will continue to impress at Anfield. “His steady nerve in pressure situations and his professionalism on and off the pitch will ensure that he has a bright future ahead of him.” With Chris Kirkland out injured for most of the season and J
BBC SPORT | Football | My Club | Leeds United | Injured pair making good progress Leeds duo Eirik Bakke and Seth Johnson are close to first-team comebacks after playing in a behind-closed-doors game against Darlington. The pair are long-term absentees with knee ligament damage, but are poised to play 90 minutes for the reserves against Manchester United next week. "They came through it well with no problems and said they felt stronger", said reserve boss Steve Agnew. "We just have to build them up for when the manager feels he can call on them." The imminent return of two such experienced players will be a boost for manager Kevin Blackwell. As well as the club's much publicised financial problems, he has also had to deal with losing strikers Nathan Blake and Brian Deane to injury recently.
Yorkshire Post Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More Administration now, urges Butler Richard Sutcliffe at Elland Road Leeds United 1 Cardiff City 1 Leeds captain calls for drastic action to save club PAUL BUTLER believes administration is looking inevitable for Leeds United and is calling on the board to act quickly or risk slipping out of the top two divisions for the first time. The ailing club are approaching a pivotal moment in their history with Norman Stubbs's consortium set to decide later today whether to invest around £15m. Sebastien Sainsbury's withdrawal from talks with Leeds over a proposed takeover means only the Stubbs group remain and if they decide not to invest then administration seems the likely outcome. That would result in a 10-point deduction which, if incurred today, would plunge Kevin Blackwell's side into the bottom three with just 17 games left in which to escape. Should Stubbs decide not to invest, t
Sport Supporters' consortium backed by Krasner By Damian Spellman 17 January 2005 The Leeds United chairman, Gerald Krasner, said yesterday that he is hopeful the club's future could be secured within weeks. Krasner, who will hold talks with a consortium led by a local businessman, Norman Stubbs, today following the collapse of Sebastien Sainsbury's take-over bid last week, said: "They are the first consortium that consists of true Leeds United supporters. That is why I have backed them, and I have not backed any of the other consortia as being serious. "He [Stubbs] is a Leeds United supporter and he believes that we were once a great team and hopefully we can get back there again. They have been talking to us for a couple of months and I believe that if anybody is going to come in with new investment, these will be the people to do it." The Stubbs consortium is the 13th to come forward, although Krasner was scathing about the Sainsbury bid. &quo
Aaron'Julian' Lennon under pressure from Cardiff's Inamoto (Well ... it is my BLOG!)
Times Online - Sunday Times Leeds 1 Cardiff 1: Thorne cuts into Leeds Richard Lewis at Elland Road ANOTHER week of trauma off the pitch for Leeds, a controversial one on it for referee Neale Barry, who was escorted off the pitch by four security men at the finish. Barry’s decision to award a second-half penalty allowed Cardiff to score the equaliser which they deserved, stretching Leeds’s run to 19 matches without a clean sheet. That is probably the least of their problems, because few teams are in their predicament. The latest saviour, Sebastien Sainsbury, having announced he was not bidding for the club, was yesterday rumoured to be preparing a smaller package to solve their financial crisis. He had better be quick. Chairman Gerald Krasner has said that administration will happen eventually, and it could be within three months. Never mind needing every penny they can find, such a scenario would mean a 10-point Championship penalty which could leave them in the bottom t
Another home game ... another dodgy penalty ... another lost two points 
Leeds United Football Club - Matchreport Leeds United vs Cardiff City Leeds 1 Cardiff 1 Pre-Match United boss Kevin Blackwell made three changes for the visit of Cardiff, two of them enforced after losing striker Nathan Blake to a hamstring injury and midfielder Sean Gregan with illness. Blake's absence saw a positional move for David Healy who played as the central striker and Julian Joachim came in on the left hand side with Aaron Lennon down the right. Danny Pugh was dropped for the game against Birmingham City in the FA Cup but he returns to a midfield that included Jermaine Wright and Simon Walton. At the back skipper Paul Butler returned from suspension to take his place alongside Matthew Kilgallon, which meant Clarke Carlisle missed out after returning from his own ban. Frazer Richardson remained at left-back. The Match With less than two minutes on the clock David Healy took tried to catch Cardiff out with a snap shot at goal. Simon Walton had trapped a long
"Our own PERSONAL JESUS"? Mr Allan Leighton, Gawd bless you, Guv 

Leighton linked to move to help United stave off administration - Yorkshire Post 16/1/05

Yorkshire Post Today: News, Sport, Jobs, Property, Cars, Entertainments & More Leighton linked to move to help United stave off administration Exclusive Richard Sutcliffe THE consortium looking to invest in Leeds United will decide on Monday whether to go ahead with their plans to plough around £15m into the troubled club. Local businessman Norman Stubbs has returned early from holiday in Barbados to meet his fellow consortium members, while the Yorkshire Post also understands he has held talks with former United deputy chairman Allan Leighton. Leighton, one of the most coveted business executives in the country, was a key member of the plc board between 1998 and late 2003 when he left to launch his own rescue plan as United's finances spiralled out of control, with debts topping £100m. It is not clear how strong 51-year-old Leighton's involvement will be, but privately he has always maintained a willingness to return to help revive the ailing club. The involv
What the hell happened? 
Times Online - Sport Leeds owe big debt to Blackwell By Rick Broadbent ALAN SMITH’S mobile phone bleeped and he clicked a button to view the text message. “Happy new year,” it read. “Will you come back on loan?” The Manchester United forward grinned and thumbed his response. “You never know,” he typed. And then he returned to concentrate on the title and the Champions League, while Leeds United busied themselves with fighting fires and administration. Kevin Blackwell’s cheeky text evinced the gallows humour that has helped him to perform an unheralded triumph at Elland Road. The subtext to his message was Smith’s love of Leeds. Where legions of supporters have turned on their former demigod for leaving football’s Titanic, Blackwell cut to the truth. “If Smithy hadn’t gone, there’d have been no club to support,” the Leeds manager said. “That six million kept us alive through the summer. “He [Smith] becomes a Judas because he sacrificed himself for the club, but Manchester Un
OOOERRRR ... it's 500 quid on Red Rum in the 3.30 then 
LEEDS EXPECT TO ENTER ADMINISTRATION: Sporting Life - Football | Transfer News, Live Scores, Barclays Premiership, SPL, Championship, European News, Fixtures, Results, Tables Leeds chairman Gerald Krasner is refusing to give up the fight despite admitting "administration will happen" after Sebastien Sainsbury's proposed takeover finally collapsed. With the £25million buy-out in tatters Leeds stand on the brink of administration, potentially within the next three months. However, Krasner is determined to hold things together. When asked whether Sainsbury's decision meant administration was now around the corner for Leeds, Krasner, said: "Eventually it will happen. "It is not going to happen today or tomorrow but unless something positive happens [with another investor], it will happen." He told The Independent's online edition: "The financial situation has not been good since day one. "But having reduced the debts from £104milli