Showing posts from August, 2012

Ask the Gaffer

Neil Warnock guests at Lorimer’s, Q&A session 30/8 Time: 7.00PM Availability: Good Location: Nicky Chapman Suite - Elland Road Warnock wouldn't swap Paddy Kenny for Rob Green or anyone else #lufc Warnock wanted to sign Austin for QPR to replace Derry but couldn't afford him at the time #lufc Warnock says Austin looks like he's 43 but his passport says he's only 27 #lufc Warnock says we still need another striker and a right winger #lufc Warnock understands Snograss leaving and would of probably done the same thing as him. #lufc Warnock said be patient while the "takeover" is going on. He has put it to the back of his mind. Warnock - looks at other teams with more money but all he is bothered about is what the other manager is like. Is he better than them. Warnock. Almost sold McCormack for Mackail-Smith but needed money to secure it. Warnock - Saw Joel Ward as an investment but was disappointed when it didn't happen. Warnock - Still play

Leeds United v Oxford United: Reshuffled Whites prove too strong

Yorkshire Evening Post 29/8/12 By Phil Hay A final at Wembley is asking too much – in this competition at any rate – but Leeds United met their manager’s daughter halfway last night by reaching the third round of the Capital One Cup. The tournament is so often bypassed by Neil Warnock in the interest of other priorities but his conscience was tweaked two weeks ago by his daughter Amy asking whether he would consider taking the League Cup seriously and if Leeds might have the legs to win it. Warnock could hardly promise the latter but United’s progression to the third round could produce what the League Cup has given Leeds twice in three years – a high-profile tie against club who might conceivably lift the trophy early next year. Liverpool in 2009 and Manchester United last season were the club’s commission for a serious approach. They await the draw with interest again. There is more to a game of that nature than keeping Warnock’s family happy. It is a source of money too and L

Bates Ken go

The Sun 30/8/12 By ANDREW DILLON KEN BATES looks set to end his controversial reign at Leeds in the next 72 hours. Islamic Investment bank Gulf Finance House Capital are close to a £50million takeover deal and they will replace chairman Bates with David Haigh. Team boss Neil Warnock has had discussions with the prospective new owners about transfer funds and their plans to get back into the Premier League. A source close to the deal told SunSport: “Things are moving quickly. GFH Capital are eager to start rebuilding Leeds United.”

Secrecy, Lies And Indemnity

The Scratching Shed 28/8/12 Indemnity. Replacing ‘imminent’ as this summers buzzword, indemnity is basically the would-be owners guarantee that Ken Bates will be financially liable for any skeletons found lurking in the Elland Road closets after he departs. In short, indemnity is compensation awarded if a pre-determined event occurs – say, for example, Leeds United are taken to court over something the previous regime was responsible for. If the latest reports from the Yorkshire Evening Post and the Leeds United Supporters Trust are accurate, the indemnity clause is the final hurdle before an agreement is sealed and Ken Bates relinquishes control of the club. The only problem is, Ken Bates appears to be stalling. Like most Leeds fans (I suspect), my mind immediately jumps to the conclusion that the buyers have stumbled across a very specific skeleton in Ken Bates’ closet that he fears is bound to resurface sooner or later. When you’re dealing with a man more notable for deception

QUOTE (boozie @ Aug 27 2012, 10:26 AM)

WACCOE I've said before the buyers currently at the table are in it for the long haul. They have invested too much £ into this takeover just to let it collapse. They want Leeds Uniteds and are in no rush to push it through. The longer this goes on the bigger the pressure on Bates to sell, the money is running out and he knows the buyers are ready to step in. They are in a great negotiation position. I estimated that their legal fees are already between 1 and 2 million (probably nearer two) and they have already paid 4million to the club. They are not going to walk away from that kind of money because Bates wants to play games. These are big boys who have played with bigger boys(I was going to say fish but that just leads to more puns) than Ken Bates. I don't see this happening before Friday (just my opinion) but I do still see this happening.* * I base all this on the last update I had on Saturday, who knows what has gone on since then. LUST statement should hopefully rattl

Warnock’s transfer pot is empty

Yorkshire Evening Post 27/8/12 By Phil Hay Leeds United look destined to sit out the final stages of the transfer window with manager Neil Warnock no closer to securing fresh funds. Warnock appeared to dismiss the possibility of a sudden injection of cash this week by admitting after Saturday’s win over Peterborough United that Leeds “won’t be buying anybody” before the summer deadline passes at midnight on Friday. The United boss has warned repeatedly that his need to increase the squad at Elland Road was unlikely to be met in the last days of the window and his latest comments indicate that he has no expectation of a planned takeover of Leeds going through in the next four days. The buy-out proposed by a consortium from the Middle East – a group who have been in negotiations with United owner and chairman Ken Bates for more than three months –would potentially address Warnock’s empty transfer fund but it is increasingly uncertain if the takeover deal will survive a long and unex

Leeds United Supporters Trust Update: The Takeover - Present and Future

LUST Update 26/8/12 With the end of the transfer window less than a week away, Leeds United Supporters' Trust are very concerned by the lack of progress towards concluding the takeover of Leeds United. The appearance of representatives from GFH Capital at Elland Road last weekend led to optimism that the drawn out process of negotiations would soon be over. The past week, however, has brought no further updates, and Neil Warnock is now publicly suggesting that he will have no money to strengthen the team over the next few days. Despite his difficulties in building a competitive squad, Warnock has managed Leeds to two wins so far, and he and his players have enjoyed the vociferous backing of our fans as they battle to mount the promotion challenge we expected this season. Manager, players and fans are all pulling together to make this season a success, but these efforts could be in vain if they are not matched by effort in the boardroom. L.U.S.T. have enjoyed better relations

Warnock - No players in before window closes - 26/8/12

Neil Warnock says he will not be signing any players before the transfer window closes this week. The transfer window closes on Friday and Warnock says it will probably be September before they sign anyone else, with someone coming in on loan. Speaking on Yorkshire Radio, Warnock said, "We won`t be buying anybody. I think the most we can expect is a loan signing if we can, going into September. "We will have to be very lucky to get through with the squad we currently have." Warnock has brought in ten players so far this summer and he is currently trying to negotiate a deal with El Hadji Diouf, who is currently at Elland Road on a non-contract basis. The Leeds boss has been fortunate with the emergence of youngster Sam Byram, who once again made an impact from the bench in the win at Peterborough on Saturday. Fellow youngster Dominic Poleon came on to mark his championship debut and Warnock says he is working with a great bunch of lads but a few injuries could leave

Peterborough 1 Leeds 2: Becchio brace gets Warnock's men back on track

Mail 25/8/12 In-form Luciano Becchio took his tally for the season to four as Leeds bounced back from their midweek collapse at Blackpool to record their second win of the season at Peterborough. Neil Warnock's men surrendered a 1-0 lead in the space of four second-half minutes on Tuesday night, with the veteran boss particularly scathing of Becchio and his fellow forwards for their role in the loss. Becchio is no stranger to criticism from his manager either, having had his fitness called into question in pre-season, but he continued to deliver answers today with a goal in each half. Neither was the most taxing of finishes, with an abject and so-far-pointless Peterborough docile in defence, allowing first Luke Varney and then Ross McCormack to pick out the Argentinean. And, although Michael Bostwick pulled one back for Peterborough with 17 minutes remaining, Darren Ferguson's side were unable to prevent themselves losing their opening three games of the season for the f

Takeover patience starting to run out - Hay

Yorkshire Evening Post 25/8/12 By Phil Hay The laborious takeover of Leeds United spawned a supporter-led protest on Thursday, under the banner #Pen4Ken. The campaign is derived from Ten4Ken, a short-lived movement which in 2010 sought answers to 10 questions about the club’s policies and ownership structure. It consists of nothing more militant or aggressive than posting pens to Ken Bates care of Leeds United and Elland Road. All scepticism about strategy and impact aside, the sentiment of #Pen4Ken is genuinely conceived. This takeover needs signing off and patience is wearing thin. There is rising clamour for Bates, United’s chairman and majority shareholder, to put his name to a deal which passes the club to new owners. The generous public are making sure he has something to write with. If the demand for completion – or if not that, some clarity beyond the meaningless insistence that “talks are on-going” – strikes you as premature then consider the following: 88 days have passe

Leeds fans mail pens to Ken Bates in bid to oust owner

ITV 24/8/12 Fans of Leeds United have begun sending pens to owner Ken Bates as part of a campaign to oust the 80-year-old and hurry through a takeover of the club. The cheeky campaign, dubbed Pen4Ken, originated on Twitter, with fans arranging to send pens to Elland Road, addressed to Bates, for him to use to sign off on a reported takeover deal which has dragged on throughout the summer. An official Twitter account has also been set up and on Friday morning published details of Bates' home address in Monaco. A takeover of Leeds had looked on the cards earlier this summer, when an unnamed group thought to be from the Middle East entered into a period of due diligence ahead of a potential purchase of Bates' 72.85% share of the club. But earlier this month it appeared the deal had stalled, with the exclusivity period for the consortium ended without a takeover going through. Since then no progress has been made, and though Leeds fans had hoped for cash investment to fire

Warnock - No more in unless takeover finalised

23/8/12 Leeds United boss Neil Warnock says unless the takeover is completed he cannot see any more players coming in to the club before the transfer window closes. Leeds have been in talks with a possible new investor to the club since the start of the summer, but as yet, nothing has been finalised with the transfer window nearing an end. The summer transfer window closes in one week and Warnock says he is now looking at bringing in players on loan from September 1st, when Premier League clubs have to finalise their 25 man squads. Speaking on LUTV, Warnock said, "I can`t see anything changing before deadline day unless the takeover is finalised. "I think we will now be looking to loans from the Premier League when they register their 25 man squads on September 1st." Warnock feels his squad is nowhere near good enough at the moment to make a challenge for promotion, with no depth to his squad. The Leeds boss has already lost Paul Green for around eight weeks and h

Our own worst enemies - Boss 22/8/12 Neil Warnock's Blackpool verdict... Neil Warnock said his side were their own worst enemies at Blackpool on Tuesday after coming within 15 minutes of what would have been a backs-to-the-wall victory. After Tom Lees early goal put Leeds ahead, United were forced to dig deep with a rearguard action that included several outstanding saves from Paddy Kenny, but just as the storm appeared to have been weathered two goals in the space of five minutes saw the points snatched away. "It was disappointing," said the boss. "They were the better side, but after defending so well like we did...we were our own worst enemies for the two goals. "We had plenty of time to clear the ball for the first one and young Sam got done for the second one - but I can't fault the back lads because we didn't hold it up enough. "I thought the front four were poor and I told them that because we have to hold the ball up more away from home. As good as

Blackpool v Leeds United: Tangerines sink the Whites

Yorkshire Evening Post 22/8/12 By Phil Hay It would have been some statement of intent: two wins from two games against clubs who are ranked in the highest bracket of Championship class. Neil Warnock visualised that scenario for more than an hour at Blackpool as Leeds United slogged towards a victory that would have been everything their defeat of Wolverhampton Wanderers was not: nervous, unconvincing and against the run of the entire match. But United’s manager is savvy enough to know the likely repercussions of an onslaught and with three points in their grasp at Bloomfield Road, Leeds succumbed to two goals which came in the final 15 minutes but had been in the offing for so much longer. Blackpool chipped away desperately at Tom Lees’ 16th-minute header, striking a post and meeting two rigid obstacles in United goalkeeper Paddy Kenny and referee Dean Whitestone before substitutes Nouha Dicko and Matt Phillips made the most of the 25 minutes they were given by Ian Holloway. Dic

The Leeds United Miserablist, interesting but not impressive times - 22/8/12

Michael Green So two games into the 2012-13 season and where are we? Well to be blunt all over the place. Once you peel away the veneer of early season optimism and OTT expectation levels you find a football club no further nearer sorting itself out, on or off the pitch, than it has been for most of the last decade. Whether you believe in buy-outs or not, drink at the fountain of Warnock’s hyperbole or don’t it doesn’t take much thinking about to note that despite all the interesting sideshows delusional promotion dreams are at some point about to get stamped on. Now notwithstanding this columns name (and my reputation) I rhetorically challenge anyone to show where any of the detail outlined in this article is wrong or unduly “negative”. The truth is I don’t need to over guild any Miserablist lilies, the state of the club does it all for me. However I am always happy to acknowledge realities and it is absolutely true a significant rump of the support are lapping up the concoction of

Leeds Fans Leave Bates With No Excuses

Football Fancast 21/8/12 Written by Steve-Turner The weekend programme notes from Ken Bates didn’t fill us in on much, we know that talks are ongoing but as it stands, that is all we know. However, any fan that follows the mumblings of Bates on a regular basis will have spotted one of his famous lines amongst the rubble, that is of course the now legendary ‘your protests scare investors off’ line. Now, anyone that believes that ‘Bates out’ chants or a protest march makes investors think twice about taking a chance on Leeds need to look at the only person that is claiming that to be the case, which is the very man the protests are aimed at. Any potential investor with any credibility whatsoever would be well aware of the current relationship between Bates and the fans, they don’t come skipping into Elland Road with bags of money only to retreat in horror when they hear our nasty ‘Bates out’ chants. Unfortunately, we have only ever been able to take Ken’s word for it that these pote

Finance firm representatives spotted at Elland Road

Yorkshire Evening Post 21/8/12 By Phil Hay Representatives of a major private equity firm in the Middle East were among the guests of Ken Bates during Saturday’s game between Leeds United and Wolves, the Yorkshire Evening Post can reveal. Salem Patel and David Haigh, senior figures at Dubai-based investment company GFH Capital Limited, joined United’s chairman at Elland Road for the club’s first match of the Championship season amid on-going talks about a buy-out of Leeds. Patel – a board member at GFH Capital – and Haigh, the firm’s deputy chief executive officer, sat close to Bates in the stadium’s East Stand throughout a 1-0 win over Wolves. United’s opening league fixture came at the end of a week of relentless takeover negotiations between the board at Elland Road and a group of Middle Eastern investors who have been bidding to acquire the West Yorkshire club for almost three months. The identity of the buyers has never been revealed and claims that a member of Bahrain’s rul

Sam signs up for the future 20/8/12 Teenage defender signs new United contract... Teenage defender Sam Byram has pledged his future to Leeds United by signing a new three-year contract. The 18-year-old signed his first professional deal at the end of last season, but after a whirlwind summer that has seen him make his senior debut, the youngster was offered a new extended contract with the club. "I'm delighted," said Sam, who made his senior debut against Shrewsbury in the Capital One Cup first round tie before following that with his league debut last weekend. "I didn't expect anything like this at all when we started back six or seven weeks ago." Sam's first involvement with the senior side came as part of a young second half team in the opening pre-season friendly at Farsley. But he went on to feature in every senior friendly before stepping into the competitive action. "I was in the squad for the Farsley game and I just wanted to do well and impress

Leeds United are still a work in progress - Hay

Yorkshire Evening Post 19/8/12 By Phil Hay There are certain teams who were good enough to treat the Championship as a sprint – Queens Park Rangers two years ago and Newcastle United before them – but the majority of clubs will see the start of this season as the onset of a marathon. Asked about the significance of the league season opener against Wolves, Neil Warnock said: “The result isn’t going to determine whether we do well or not. We’ve got a hard start and the first few months are extremely difficult. It’s one of those where we’ll be hanging in there.” The worry for United’s manager is whether his squad has the legs and the resources to see through a campaign which, if his assessment of their potential is correct, could run for 48 games up to the play-off final on May 27. Last season the squad at Elland Road finished eight positions and 14 points shy of sixth place, devoid of the necessary stamina or ability. With the new season here and the transfer window due to close in

Mystery Middle Eastern investors survey Leeds United

Sport 360 19/8/12 The mystery over the possible new owners of Championship club Leeds United continued yesterday with the presence of Middle Eastern businessmen in owner Ken Bates’ Elland Road hospitality box. The controversial owner, who had flown in from Monaco for the first game of the season against Wolves, entertained what is thought to be members of the unnamed consortium that has been engaged in a summer of negotiations over the £40 million purchase of his 72 per cent stake in the club. Rumours on Twitter and fan message boards suggested one of the gentleman, pictured in sunglasses and carrying a Leeds scarf during and after the game, was Sheikh Saoud Bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, a member of Qatar’s ruling family and the Secretary General of Qatar Olympic Committee. The Eid holiday, which began in the Gulf this morning, has made confirmation all but impossible, although it is unlikely such a high profile figure would make himself so visible. But is an interesting new twist to

Leeds United 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 0: match report

Independent 18/8/12 By Si Hughes, Elland Road Finally, there was progressive news from Elland Road. The announcement of a new three-year contract for Ross McCormack on Friday evening clearly lifted Leeds United ahead of this victory, but it also vindicated a widely held theory based on simplicity: for the club to be successful, it must find a way to retain its best players. McCormack, the Glaswegian striker that scored 19 times last season, was at his very best here; his intelligent movement and dexterous use of possession too cunning for a Wolves side emotionally brittle after their relegation from the Premier League. Ken Bates, the Leeds United chairman blamed for years of cost-cutting through player sales, reiterated in his programme notes that he is trying to sell to owners with deeper pockets. Not for the first time he preached patience, adding that supporter reaction in the next few weeks will be crucial with interest in a full takeover from the Middle East genuine. "We

Bates talks of potential investors

Sky 18/8/12 Leeds owner insists that investors are welcome By Subhankar Mondal Leeds United owner Ken Bates has insisted he is still in discussion with potential investors. The Championship club revealed on June 26 that they had granted an exclusivity period to would-be investors, but issued a statement on August 10 confirming that period had ended with no deal being reached. Subsequent reports suggested that no more takeover negotiations were going to take place, but Bates has now dismissed them. "Suffice to say that the exclusivity period granted to the original would-be investor have now lapsed, but we are continuing talks with the same people," he wrote in his programme notes ahead of Saturday's season-opener with Wolverhampton Wanderers. On the lack of public support and abuse he has received from Leeds supporters over the years, Bates wrote: "We have to get it right and public comment and chants doesn't help. "They have discouraged two partie

Investment talks continue - Chairman 18/8/12 Investment talks latest... United chairman Ken Bates has confirmed that talks with potential investors are continuing. With speculation continuing apace about the position of the talks, the United chairman says talks are ongoing and are bound by confidentiality agreements. "The real problem is that rumours have abounded inevitably," he told LUTV. "We are in negotiations with a party. We signed an exclusivity agreement to give them time to do due diligence, and we're continuing negotiations. "We're also bound by confidentiality, so we can't say anything, and in the absence of being able to say anything rumours abound. "It's basically pub speculation that's being put out to a wider audience. I'm sorry for the fans because there's nothing more I can tell them at this stage, but when we can I will."

Leeds United takeover ‘is heading to a conclusion’

Yorkshire Evening Post 18/8/12 By Phil Hay The proposed takeover of Leeds United was awaiting the go-ahead today after a week of exhaustive negotiations between United’s board and the group bidding to buy the club. Intense discussions involving the legal representatives of both sides have continued throughout the past seven days in an attempt to break the deadlock surrounding the bid by a Middle Eastern consortium to take control at Elland Road. A deal to acquire the club and the 72.85 per cent stake held by chairman and owner Ken Bates – a deal believed to have been reached in principle at the end of June – appeared to be drifting towards collapse a week ago but renewed talks have revived the possibility of a full takeover. A legal source told the YEP last night that the buy-out of United was still dependent on the two sides resolving “necessary legal matters”, describing them as “decisive issues” but claiming the process was nearing the “end of the line, whichever way it goes.”

What Warnock Said: “I Don’t Think We’re Automatic Promotion Material”

The Scratching Shed 15/8/12 Neil Warnock has today told reporters that he doesn’t believe Leeds United are good enough for automatic promotion. ”If I put my hand on my heart, I don’t think we’re automatic promotion material. “That’s not me being defeatist, I’m just being realistic about the squad we’ve got. I’m telling you what I see.” The Whites boss previously described this summer as the most difficult one he’s ever faced in terms of player recruitment and admitted he’d considered walking away at one point as he grew frustrated at the lack of funds made available to him. Early optimism based on takeover speculation and the arrival of Jason Pearce soon dissipated as negotiations dragged on and Neil Warnock was left to perform a balancing act with his squad, forced to sell players before he could recruit new ones. It’s not all been doom and gloom for Neil Warnock however. After the slow start to the transfer window and despite the takeover dragging on into a third month of specu

Exclusivity period granted to would-be investors has lapsed - Phil Hay (Yorkshire Evening Post) on Twitter 18/8/12 Phil Hay ‏@PhilHayYEP Bates: "We have to get it right and comment and chants don't help. They have discouraged 2 parties who didn't like what they saw or heard." Phil Hay ‏@PhilHayYEP Bates in programme: "Exclusivity period granted to would-be investors has lapsed but we are continuing talks with the same people." #lufc