Showing posts from November, 2012

Dream start for David in Leeds role

This is Cornwall 29/11/12 A FORMER Cornishman reporter has become a director of Leeds United after fronting the bid for a Middle Eastern bank to take full control of the Championship side. David Haigh, who grew up in Sancreed, is the chief executive of Dubai-based GFH Capital, which finalised a deal for buying the club last week, after months of negotiations. The investment bank has now started a one-month transitional period and, following Football League approval, will become 100 per cent shareholder of the club. In the interim period, Mr Haigh has joined the board of Leeds United as a director as well as joining the boards of parent company, Leeds City Holding's other businesses including Yorkshire Radio, while his fellow bank executives are expected to join next month. Mr Haigh, a former Cape Cornwall school pupil, worked on The Cornishman's Down Your Way reporting team from the age of 13 – a job he continued to do for about seven years. He said the company was prou

Palace and Leicester wins have revived fortunes - Norris INTERVIEW

Yorkshire Evening Post 29/11/12 By Phil Hay Contrary to public opinion and the club’s faltering form, David Norris always believed that Leeds United could drag six points from their games against Crystal Palace and Leicester City. But the midfielder spoke today of a sense of relief among United’s players after back-to-back wins revived a season which he and his team-mates felt slipping through their fingers a week ago. Norris admitted to a noticeable loss of confidence prior to Saturday’s 2-1 win over Palace, caused by seven games without a victory and the persistent uncertainty surrounding the takeover of Leeds. United fell to 18th position in the Championship table after losing to Millwall on November 18 and looked hopelessly vulnerable ahead of three games in eight days against Palace, Leicester and Huddersfield Town. But the club consolidate a spirited win against Palace by inflicting a 1-0 defeat on Leicester on Tuesday night, and Norris is hopeful that a “desperately” neede

Ownership statement 28/11/12 Leeds United Football Club Limited ('LUFC') the company that holds the shares in the Football League, is a member of the West Riding County Football Association and an Associate Member of the Football Association. LUFC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Leeds City Holdings Limited ('LCH'). LCH has 6 unconnected shareholders. Four of the shareholders hold 18.11% collectively, with no one of these holding more than 10%. FSF Limited (a company incorporated in Nevis) holds 48.56% of the issued shares. FSF Limited is owned by Outro Limited which is wholly owned by Mr. K. W. Bates and is registered in Nevis. LUFC Holding Limited a company based in Grand Cayman holds 33.33% of the issued shares. LUFC Holding Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of GFH Capital Limited which is based in Dubai. GFH Capital Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Gulf Finance House, BSC, which is based in Bahrain. No shareholder in Gulf Finance House, BSC holds over

Leeds United 1 Leicester 0: Leeds are given impetus again to honour Speed

Yorkshire Post 28/11/12 By Leon Wobschall IT has been a year-long wait between midweek Championship victories for Leeds United – but both have borne the same emotional imprint. Twelve months ago, a following of 3,700 Whites supporters made the trip to Nottingham Forest to see United honour the late Gary Speed in the best possible way by virtue of a 4-0 victory, just a few days after his untimely passing. In 10 subsequent league midweek matches, United were not able to celebrate victory and have endured some embarrassing and awful nights. Redemption was finally at hand last night on another evening when Speed was central to everybody’s thoughts on the first anniversary of his tragic death. His former club delivered, albeit not quite with the same panache against Leciester as they did against their East Midlands rivals Forest. But victories come in all shapes and sizes and the win over the Foxes, courtesy of a third-minute penalty from Luciano Becchio, felt pretty sweet as Unite

Leeds 1 Leicester 0: Hosts honour Speed's memory in style after early Becchio penalty secures win

Mail 27/11/12 By John Edwards Gary Speed's memory was honoured in fitting style by Leeds United's players and fans at an emotional Elland Road. If it hardly seems possible a year has passed since Speed's death, the way Leeds fans commemorated it was easier to believe. He was revered by an adoring public, for his deeds in the No 11 shirt, and it showed as they applauded his life for 60 seconds before kick-off, then chanted his name for 11 minutes from the 11th minute. By the time their rousing tribute had finished, those who have followed in Speed's footsteps had done their bit by claiming a thirdminute penalty breakthrough that was to prove decisive. Attacking right back Sam Byram's darting run into the area was halted by a clumsy challenge from Jeff Schlupp, and Luciano Becchio calmly waited for Leicester protests to die down before sending former Leeds keeper Kasper Schmeichel the wrong way for his 12th goal of the campaign. Fresh from denting Crystal Pal

Match report: Leeds United 1 Leicester 0

Yorkshire Evening Post 27/11/12 Leeds United ended their year-long midweek league hoodoo by claiming their second impressive scalp in as many games as they saw off Leicester City at Elland Road. Three days after a 2-1 victory over then-leaders Crystal Palace, Neil Warnock’s men got the better of the third-placed Foxes to record a first midweek success since they beat Nottingham Forest 4-0 some 364 days ago. That night was a significant one for United as it was their first game since the death of club icon Gary Speed and they tonight remembered their former title winner, marking the occasion in style with another success. Luciano Becchio scored the only goal of the game with an early penalty, meaning the Whites have yet to lose since they were acquired by GFH Capital last week. Warnock hopes their investment can drag his side up the table. Leicester have been flush with foreign money for some time now and this was their first defeat in five outings. Martyn Waghorn hit the bar wi

100 Years Ago - Leeds City and Walden

Leeds Mercury Thursday, November 28, 1912 Transfer developments unfavourable The hurried effort to help the Northampton Football Club in its serious financial embarrassment closed tonight, when the guarantors and the club secretary met to receive the final contributions. The campaign, which has lasted twelve days, has resulted in a sum of £650 being contributed. The task set was £1,500 and failure means transferring at least one player to obtain money. The Northampton supporters hope the partial success will prevent transfers, especially as it has been officially stated that no players will be parted with until the Cup-ties are done with. Walden, the brilliant outside-right, is the idol of the crowd, and everyone recognises that were he to go to Leeds, the gain of that city would be very much the loss of the Cobblers’ town. Confidence is, however, now general that Fanny Walden is saved for the present still to represent the premier team of his native city. The disappointing f

Thomas delighted he opted for Whites

Yorkshire Evening Post 27/11/12 By Leon Wobschall Sat on the settee watching Jeff Stelling and the Soccer Saturday team hold court this season was starting to rankle with Jerome Thomas. As it was for Leeds United’s other emergency loan window deadline-day signing Alan Tate, with both casting aside a fair bit of frustration to do their bit on the pitch and sample the joyous atmosphere of a winning dressing room in the process for the first time in a good while on Saturday. It’s something Swansea City defender Tate had, until last weekend, experienced just once this term, albeit in a routine Capital One Cup victory for the Swans against Barnsley, one of just four appearances in 2012-13. You have to go back to last season for West Brom loanee Thomas tasting that particular sensation, with the wingman having not featured for the bouyant Baggies since the end of April and it was he who was the one clutching the man-of-the-match champagne for his efforts in Saturday’s 2-1 home success

Overseas Investment At Elland Road – What This Means For Leeds United?

The Hard Tackle 27/11/12 By Siddharth Mohan After six months of speculation and negotiation, the saga of Leeds United A.F.C getting a new owner finally seems to be coming to an end. Dubai based investment bank GFH Capital have finalized agreements with Leeds United and its current chairman and owner Ken Bates, and are expected to complete 100 % takeover of the club by 21st of December in a deal worth £52million. Ken Bates will continue as the chairman of the club for the current season after which he is expected to take over the reins as the president of the Yorkshire club. GFH Capital executive David Haigh who is a supporter of Leeds’ since his childhood will join the board of Leeds United and he will be accompanied by his colleagues from GFH, Hisham Alrayes and Salem Patel, who will be joining the board once the takeover is fully completed. It has been a difficult decade for Leeds United and its fans, starting out from the financial meltdown caused by their failure to qualify for

Warnock delighted Leeds won for new owners

Yorkshire Post 26/11/12 By Leon Wobschall LEEDS UNITED director David Haigh basked in the glow of a heartening start to the GFH Capital era as the Whites ended their seven-match winless streak in fine style with a 2-1 victory over Championship form side Crystal Palace. United ended a roller-coaster week in exhilarating fashion, much to the delight of GFH deputy chief executive Haigh and executive Salem Patel, who were sat in the East Stand on Saturday. Haigh was appointed to the board in midweek after GFH 
finalised the first stage of their buy-out of United. Completion of the takeover from owner Ken Bates is due on December 21 and Patel will become a club director next month. The pair watched as goals from Luciano Becchio and Paul Green saw the hosts inflict a first defeat in 15 games upon Palace who were deposed as leaders. The duo met Neil Warnock after Saturday’s game, with transfer business in January top of the agenda. GFH had already made a statement of intent on Thursday

Leeds United v Crystal Palace: Whites back in the groove

Yorkshire Evening Post 26/11/12 By Phil Hay When the relief of the final whistle washed over him, Neil Warnock gestured appreciatively to the directors’ box at Elland Road. A clap, a wave, a nod and a wink, all of which said this win was for them. There are ways of impressing incoming owners and Saturday’s defeat of Crystal Palace was Leeds United’s gift to GFH Capital, gratefully given and gladly received. Four days after edging its takeover beyond the point of no return, the firm’s representatives were made to feel that their money was in the right place. Two of them attended the game – new Leeds director David Haigh and soon-to-be-board member Salem Patel – and the result ensured a pleasant meeting with Warnock afterwards. They kept a low profile throughout their visit, leaving comment about the takeover to Ken Bates and attention post-match to Warnock and his team but United’s manager refused to let them go unmentioned. “These people have given me a massive lift,” he said. T

Leeds United 2 Crystal Palace 1

Fear and Loathing in LS11 25/11/12 Ken DeMange In the directors’ box, a boyhood Leeds fan appears, smiling and waving in acknowledgement to the well-wishers around him; he takes up his seat and surveys the sight afore him – a buzzing Elland Road. The teams emerge to rapturous applause; he detects fervour, an enthusiasm, a new sense of hope that sets this day aside from many that have preceded it. The highly fancied opposition, decked out in the distinctive striped kit with which they’ve become synonymous and blessed with an abundance of high quality, technically gifted players have come to offer the acid test, as the Whites’ ambitions of securing a top two slot rest upon a seminal 90 minutes under the floodlights… I still remember that Champions League clash with Barcelona like it was yesterday. Saturday’s clash though played in front of 19,000 less spectators and host to several hundred millions of pounds less of talent, couldn’t help but provoke memories at that night. While Ri

Warnock hoping to keep loan players- Win was no fluke

Leeds United boss Neil Warnock felt the win over Crystal Palace was no fluke after ending a seven match winless run. The 2-1 win at Elland Road against top of the table Palace also brought to an end a run of fourteen games without a defeat for the visitors, stretching back to August. Warnock was delighted with what he called a disciplined and good all-round team performance and he heaped praise on the full backs as well as new signing Alan Tate. Speaking on Yorkshire Radio, Warnock said, "I thought we were really disciplined today and we have worked on it for a few days. I thought Sam (Byram) and Lee (Peltier) were really good with the Palace danger men out wide and Tate was fantastic. "It was a good all-round performance and I don`t think it was a fluke." Leeds started brightly and David Norris came close to giving Leeds an early lead, his shot being kept out by Palace goalkeeper Juliano Speroni. At the other end, Paddy Kenny made a great double save to deny Palac

Leeds United world of James, Ten for GFH-C

Clarkeonenil 25/11/12 By Clarke One Nil Remember this? James asks the vital questions. When I wrote my last missive a month ago and titled it Spot The Difference, little did I know it would prove to be quite so prophetic…. Because this week, we saw the takeover that never was… Saviours GFH-C signed a deal to take over ownership of Leeds United, and then went and spoilt it by leaving possibly the most hated – and certainly the most divisive – man in the club’s history in charge until the summer. To add insult to injury, they then gave him the title of honorary life president to boot. Many will have you believe that this is the end of the Ken Bates regime, but I’m not so sure myself. He will still be around until at least the end of May to produce more of his poison pen programme notes and then he takes over a position previously graced for many years by such a gentleman as George Lascelles, the Earl of Harewood. While his lordship undoubtedly saw the title as little more than a

Energised Leeds take a step in the right direction

Independent 25/11/12 Leeds United 2 Crystal Palace 1 Simon Hart A cold, wet winter's afternoon in west Yorkshire did not feel much like a bright new dawn but Leeds United completed a significant week off the pitch at Elland Road with a much-needed step in the right direction on it. Three days after the long-awaited announcement of the club's takeover by the Dubai-based investment firm, Gulf Finance House Capital, Neil Warnock's team ended a seven-match wait for a League victory by overcoming high-flying Crystal Palace. With the paralysing uncertainty over the club's future now settled, Warnock had said the season started here, and this was the right way to go about it in front of David Haigh, GFH Capital's deputy chief executive, and director Salem Patel. The takeover process is expected to be completed in December after a one-month transitional period and Haigh's declared wish is to take Leeds "back to the Premier League as soon as possible".

Leeds United 2 Crystal Palace 1: We deserved our victory, says Warnock

Yorkshire Evening Post 24/11/12 Neil Warnock was full of praise for his new loan signings as Leeds United beat Championship leaders Crystal Place. Leeds were 2-1 victors thanks to goals from Luciano Becchio and Paul Green and although Peter Ramage scored for Palace with a powerful header, the Londoners lost for the first time in 16 matches, as they were knocked off the top of the npower Championship table by Cardiff. Leeds were determined to impress their new owners, with loan signings Alan Tate and Jerome Thomas playing their part in ending a seven-match winless drought. Thomas gave Palace a torrid time with his strong, direct runs down the left, while Tate was solid at the back alongside Tom Lees. Leeds manager Neil Warnock felt his side were well worth the win and praised his deadline day loan signings. “I am absolutely delighted for the new owners. We deserved the win over the 90 minutes,” he said. “We started the game very well and had to hang in there at times but our two

Leeds 2 Crystal Palace 1: Becchio and Green put on a show for new owners GFH Capital

Mail 24/11/12 By Wayne Gardiner Leeds manager Neil Warnock delivered on his promise that the season started today as his side kicked off their new era by ending Crystal Palace's 14-game unbeaten run. After six months of negotiations, United were this week bought by GFH Capital, and Warnock, having said anyone could have done his job for the first four cash-strapped months of the season, claimed today was the first day of his pursuit of a record-setting eighth promotion. And, although the goals scored by Luciano Becchio and Paul Green do not mask the fact Leeds had gone seven without a win prior to today, leaving them far from Premier League material, this was as good a start as they and GFH could have wished for. Equally, a first defeat since their Capital One Cup defeat to Preston on August 28 does not spell disaster for Palace, although Cardiff's win at Barnsley means top spot is no longer theirs. Manager Ian Holloway, for whom this was a first loss since his switch f

Leeds United takeover: A good start but plenty still to sort - Hay

Yorkshire Evening Post 24/11/12 By Phil Hay There are hostile takeovers and then there is the takeover sealed in principle by GFH Capital. No blood was spilled in the sale of Leeds United or none that we can see. As business transactions go, this was friendly to a fault. The measured tone of Wednesday’s announcement brought to mind the contrasting style of Ken Bates’ ascension to the position of chairman in January 2005. The buy-out he fronted was largely amicable – strangely so given the deterioration of his relationship with the out-going board – but it was also quick; agreed within days and implemented within days. Bates staged a press conference a week later and a fans’ forum on the same night, controlling both events as men like him do. You knew by then that this was his club, his turf and his call. Farewell to the days of ruling by committee. In the past week a committee of sorts has re-established itself at Elland Road, for the month ahead and perhaps beyond. The deal struc

Five months remain to ‘work a miracle’

Yorkshire Evening Post 23/11/12 By Phil Hay This time last week, Neil Warnock thought the game was up. His body language said as much. No money, no takeover, no players, no hope. A week is a long time in management. Thursday’s press conference stopped short of a carnival but it no longer resembled the last rites. If nothing else, the fight in Warnock revealed itself again. “Seven days ago I was thinking ‘what a wasted opportunity’,” he said. “Now it feels like I’m opening the curtains.” There are, of course, clouds in the sky: a troubling league position and an acute shortage of players, a shortage so bad that Warnock made 33 phone calls in pursuit of new signings while the takeover of Leeds United sank in on Wednesday. An overnight solution was too much to ask for with the January transfer window so far away and Warnock said he had “five months to do a miracle”. He at least made it sound like a miracle could happen. United’s manager cut a sombre, depressed figure in the days befo

Leeds United Takeover: A Silver Lining Marred By A Huge Ken Bates - Shaped Cloud

Sabotage Times 23/11/12 by Andy Peterson The Leeds United takeover saga is finally over, but scepticism still remains as Bates will remain as President. A lot of work must go into taking Leeds of handbrake that Bates has had them on for years... Now it’s here, the feeling is more than a little anti-climactic: as the implications continue to sink in of yesterday’s long awaited takeover announcement, the sensation it provoked amongst many Leeds United fans was one of simple relief, tinged however with suspicion. This contrasted to our sentiments at the beginning of the process, one which has taken six months to come to fruition – and isn’t even officially completed until December 21st, after United take on Chelsea in the league cup – when there was a huge sense of optimism amongst the club’s supporters. It was quite reasonably anticipated then that with an experienced manager like Neil Warnock and some astute investment Simon Grayson’s lop sided squad could be improved to the point