Showing posts from February, 2014

Leeds United: Cellino is right in thick of it

Yorkshire Evening Post 28/2/14 by Phil Hay Brian McDermott revealed last night that prospective new owner Massimo Cellino was already in the thick of Leeds United’s operations as two transfer deals raised McDermott’s hopes of a period of calm at Elland Road. The United manager said Cellino was taking a “very close interest” in the club’s affairs, strengthening the belief that the Italian was behind positive developments seen at Leeds in the past seven days. United allowed McDermott to strengthen his squad by signing goalkeeper Jack Butland on loan from Stoke City last week and striker Connor Wickham from Sunderland on Wednesday, deals which Cellino appears to have helped to fund. The Cagliari owner is not officially in charge at Elland Road and is waiting for the Football League to approve his £25m buy-out of Leeds. But United’s financial situation – a deep concern towards the end of January – has improved since he agreed to purchase 75 per cent of shares from Gulf Finance House.

Switch to Leeds offers Wickham chance of different road to Wembley

Yorkshire Post 28/2/14 by Leon Wobschall CONNOR WICKHAM may have potentially sacrificed Wembley glory with Sunderland to head to Leeds United – but is not yet giving up on an appearance at the home of football this season. The 20-year-old has joined United on loan for the rest of the season and while gatecrashing the Championship top-six looks a decidedly onerous task for him and his new team-mates, he insists it’s not beyond the realms of possibility yet. As it stands, Leeds are seven points adrift of the play-off positions, but that hasn’t stopped Wickham, whose parent club face Manchester City in Sunday’s Capital One Cup final, eyeing a play-off final date at the end of May. Wickham, who scored two goals for the Black Cats in their round two victory over MK Dons and has made two appearances for the Wearsiders in the competition this term, said: “I hope I would have been involved. I helped the team get through to the final, so I would have liked to have been there. “But first t

Leeds United: Enterprise withdraw winding-up petition

Yorkshire Evening Post 27/2/14 by Phil Hay Enterprise Insurance, the shirt sponsor of Leeds United, has withdrawn the winding-up petition it issued against the club last month. The petition - served on Leeds on January 29 - was withdrawn after a hearing at the High Court in Manchester today. United were threatened with a winding-up order over a sum of £1.5m borrowed from Enterprise Insurance in 2012 but the club repaid the money with interest ahead of this morning’s hearing. Leeds were ordered to meet the costs of the legal case but His Honour Judge Hodge QC. In a statement, Enterprise Insurance said it had taken action against Leeds after “the club’s solicitors claimed in correspondence that there was no debt to Enterprise.” The firm took out an injunction against Leeds following the club’s insistence that the attempt to reclaim money owed was “an abuse of legal process.” Enterprise’s solicitor, Michael Ozon, said: “While we are pleased the court ruled clearly in favour of Ent

Leeds United: Cellino counting the days to ownership

Yorkshire Evening Post 27/2/14 DONE DEAL: Well, that’s how Massimo Cellino appears to view his Leeds United takeover even without football league approval. Phil Hay reports. The Football League stands between Massimo Cellino and ownership of Leeds United but in spite of delays and a strict administrative process, he still acts like a man who thinks his £25million takeover is done. Doubt was cast over his acquisition of Leeds when the Football League stated on Tuesday that the process of approving him could run to March 13, but Cellino remains in England and remains intent. He was due to spend part of this week house-hunting in north Leeds. At Elland Road, a fresh payment from the Italian has provided the money needed to meet the staff wage bill for February tomorrow. He loaned £1.5m to the club for the same purpose last month and, on top of an initial sum paid to United owner Gulf Finance House as part of his 75 per cent takeover, Cellino appears happy to fund operating costs for t

Leeds United: New-boy Wickham eyes a play-off push

Yorkshire Evening Post 27/2/14 by Phil Hay Leeds United have given their bid for play-off qualification a major shot in the arm by taking Sunderland striker Connor Wickham on loan in a further sign of Massimo Cellino’s growing influence at Elland Road. Wickham vowed to drive Leeds towards a top-six finish in the Championship after joining United for the rest of the season and becoming the club’s second high-profile recruit in the space of a week. United funded the arrival of goalkeeper Jack Butland from Stoke City last Friday and have now beaten Sheffield Wednesday to the signing of Wickham – a player who scored against Leeds during their 6-0 defeat at Hillsborough last month. Wickham, 20, will make his debut away to Queens Park Rangers on Saturday with Leeds fighting to overturn a seven-point deficit to the play-offs during their final 15 matches. The England Under-21 international said: “The potential here is big. There are some players I know already and the team is looking to

Wickham Connor ready to fire up Play Off push

leedsunited. com 26/2/14 New striker can't wait to get started... New loan signing Connor Wickham is hoping to play his part in firing Leeds United towards the Play-Off places. The England Under-21 international has joined the club from Sunderland on loan until the end of the season, and says he can’t wait to get started. “I need to be playing football,” said the striker, who scored eight goals in 11 games while on loan at Sheffield Wednesday earlier this season. “I’d been playing at Wednesday and I knew there was some interest in me, but I just needed to focus on playing football. “Once I heard Leeds were interested in signing me there were no other choices and no doubt I wanted to come. “I played against Leeds earlier this season with Sheffield Wednesday. The potential here is big. There are some players here that I know already, and the team is looking to push towards the Play-Offs. Hopefully I can help with that. “I just want to play football and do the best I can, and

United win race for striker Wickham

Image 26/2/14 Connor Wickham joins on loan... Leeds United have won the race to sign Sunderland striker Connor Wickham on loan until the end of the season. The highly-rated 20-year-old, who cost the Wearside club £8m when he joined from Ipswich in 2011, boasts 28 goals from 128 appearances and has represented England at all levels up to Under-21. “We are delighted to have signed Connor until the end of the season,” said United manager Brian McDermott. “There was a lot of competition for his signature, but he was very keen to come and play at Leeds United. He is another young English player who has everything in front of him.” Wickham carved out a name for himself at Ipswich before earning a move to Premier League Sunderland. He has also had two loan spells at Sheffield Wednesday. The striker is the club’s second signing in the space of a week, with Wickham following in the footsteps of full England international Jack Butland, who has joined on loan from Stoke and made

Leeds United snap up former Owls loanee Wickham

Yorkshire Post 26/2/14 Leeds United are on the verge of completing a deal to sign striker Connor Wickham on loan from Sunderland. The 20-year-old is set to join United until the end of the season, strengthening their squad ahead of the final 15 games of the Championship term and a trip to QPR on Saturday. Wickham has already completed three months on loan at Sheffield Wednesday this term and scored once in United’s 6-0 hammering at Hillsborough last month. His proposed move to West Yorkshire comes ahead of Sunderland’s appearance in the League Cup final this weekend.

Italian link sees Leeds United linked with Cagliari wonderkid

Here is the City 26/2/14 Stephen Pickering Leeds United have been linked to Cagliari's exciting young defender Dario Del Fabro as takeover saga drags on. According to respected journalist Gianluca Di Marzio, Leeds United are interested in 18-year-old defender Dario Del Fabro from Cagliari. The young defender is renowned as an exciting prospect in Italy, playing at all levels in the Italian youth set-up from the under-16 side, right up to the under-19s. He made his debut for Cagliari's first-team last season despite only being 17 years of age. He came on as a second half substitution against Italian giants and Serie A Champions Juventus, but unfortunately he was on the end of a 3-1 drumming. The very next game he made his full debut for the club, playing the full 90 minutes in a tightly contested away match in Rome against another Serie A giant in Lazio. It was a game that unfortunately ended in defeat for the young defender as Lazio ran out 2-1 winners. In the penultimat

Cellino’s deal delayed further but Charlton owner is proof things can be settled quickly

Yorkshire Post 26/2/14 THE most recent club owner to pass the Football League’s Fit and Proper Persons’ Test last night described the process as “quite straight-forward” as Massimo Cellino’s protracted takeover of Leeds United suffered another delay. Yesterday, the League revealed that they had asked the Italian for more information over his proposed purchase of a 75 per cent stake in the Elland Road club through his company, Eleonora Sport Ltd. Cellino exchanged contracts with Gulf Finance House, the Bahrain-based investment bank that bought United from Ken Bates towards the end of 2012, on February 7 and is keen to push the £25m deal through as quickly as possible. The 57-year-old, who was at United’s draw with Middlesbrough last Saturday, needs the League’s approval to ratify the deal, but that will not happen until March 13 at the earliest – which is when the body’s next board meeting takes place. A League spokesman said: “There are still a number of outstanding matters that w

Leeds United: Butland’s got it all to be a big success

Yorkshire Evening Post 26/2/14  by Phil Hay There are goalkeepers who spend their careers in reserve and others like Jack Butland who fight inaction at every turn. It was the thought of playing rarely – if at all – that convinced Butland to reject a move to a club who held the European Cup last year. Chelsea made him an offer they thought he’d accept but the teenager refused to be blinded by the bright lights of Stamford Bridge. On the last day of the 2013 January transfer window, he joined Stoke City; the right move in theory if not in practice. It was widely believed that Asmir Begovic, Stoke’s first choice, would depart soon after and sign for Manchester United but the Bosnian stayed put and Butland was soon trapped behind him and Thomas Sorensen. In the spirit of a keeper unwilling to sit idly, he joined Barnsley temporarily for the first half of this season and will finish it on loan with Leeds United. He has come to Elland Road to play. Maik Taylor, the former United keeper,

The saga continues... Cellino's Leeds takeover delayed by outstanding paperwork

Mail 25/2/14 By MARK WALKER, PRESS ASSOCIATION The Football League has confirmed it is still in talks with Leeds over the club’s proposed £25million takeover by Italian businessman Massimo Cellino. Cellino’s company Eleonora Sport Ltd exchanged contracts with Leeds’ owners Gulf Finance House Capital on February 7 for 75 percent of the club’s shares and the Cagliari owner has since been waiting for the League’s approval. A League statement read: 'The Football League remains in discussions with both the owners and proposed purchasers of Leeds United, regarding the planned change of ownership. 'To date, a significant amount of the requested information has been supplied by GFH and Eleonora Sport, but there are still a number of outstanding matters that will require further submissions from the two parties. 'The Board of The Football League is next scheduled to meet on March 13 where it will receive an update on the matter from the League’s executive, unless all the remai

Leeds United: Outstanding matters to be resolved in takeover, say League bosses

Yorkshire Evening Post 25/2/14 by Phil Hay The Football League said today that it was still to resolve “a number of outstanding matters” relating to Massimo Cellino’s takeover of Leeds United as the wait for a change of ownership at Elland Road goes on. Cellino’s 75 per cent purchase of United through a firm called Eleonora Sport Ltd remains up in the air with the League yet to approve his £25million deal. The Italian businessman agreed terms with current Leeds owner Gulf Finance House on February 7 but the League is refusing to sanction the takeover until Cellino and GFH satisfy its demands for information relating to his buy-out. The League is understood to be focusing its examination on the funding behind Cellino, an agricultural mangate who has run Serie A side Cagliari since 1992. “The Football League remains in discussions with both the owners and proposed purchasers of Leeds United, regarding the planned change of ownership. “To date, a significant amount of the requested

Leeds keen to snap up Sunderland striker Wickham on loan to boost play off push

Mail 25/2/14 By SIMON JONES Leeds United are in talks over a loan move for Sunderland striker Connor Wickham. The 20-year-old, who scored against Leeds while on loan at Sheffield Wednesday last month, may be allowed to go as Steven Fletcher has returned to the Sunderland first team fold after injury. The England Under 21 striker, who has scored eight goals in 11 league appearances for Wednesday, returned to Wearside in January. But Wickham has struggled to make an impact in the north east since his £8.1million switch from Ipswich during the summer of 2011. However, he has impressed during his loan spell at Hillsborough and Leeds are now keen to take him on loan for the rest of the season.

Leeds United: Mac’s hoping to land a striker

Yorkshire Evening Post 25/2/14 by Leon Wobschall LEEDS UNITED boss Brian McDermott is intensifying his search for new striking recruits this week – in a bid to inject much-needed impetus into the club’s play-off bid. United drew a blank for the second game running, at Middlesbrough on Saturday, with the match watched by prospective new owner Massimo Cellino, hoping to receive the green light from the Football League for his takeover to be completed this week. Heading into this Saturday’s game at QPR, United find themselves in 11th spot, seven points adrift of the side currently occupying the final play-off position in Reading, who have played a game more with the pair meeting at Elland Road on March 11. United have struggled for attacking punch in the last two matches, with top-scorer Ross McCormack having drawn a blank against Brighton and Boro, with McDermott seeking to bolstering his attacking options to help ease the burden on the Scot. With the loan window open until the fina

Young lion: Leeds star Mowatt wins England cap

Yorkshire Post 24/2/14 by Leon Wobschall TALENTED Leeds United midfielder Alex Mowatt has been named in Noel Blake’s 17-man squad for England U19s’ friendly clash with Turkey next week. The Young Lions face the Turks on Wednesday, March 5, with a 7pm kick-off time at the Swansway Chester Stadium, home of Conference Premier side Chester FC. Doncaster-born Mowatt, who turned 19 earlier this month, was called up by ex-United centre-half Blake, who coaches England U17s, for the autumnal game against Hungary in November, but had to pull out through a groin injury. The schemer, who has enjoyed a hugely impressive breakthrough season at Leeds since making his debut against hometown club Doncaster in a Capital One Cup clash in August, is now hoping for a case of second time lucky as he aims to make his U19s bow. The game is part of England’s preparation for the elite round of the UEFA U19 European Championship qualifying section - which the Three Lions host in May. Southampton’s Calum C

Leeds United: Friendly rivalry between goalkeepers is fine by Butland

Yorkshire Evening Post 24/2/14 by Phil Hay Jack Butland said he and Paddy Kenny would maintain a friendly, supportive rivalry at Leeds United after staking his claim to the goalkeeper’s shirt with a flawless debut against Middlesbrough. Butland earned Leeds a 0-0 draw at the Riverside on Saturday and then crossed his fingers for a run of appearances as he chases the dual ambition of play-off qualification and inclusion in England’s World Cup squad. The 20-year-old, who has joined Leeds on loan from Stoke City until the end of the season, replaced the club’s existing first-choice keeper with Kenny requiring treatment on an ankle injury. Butland emerged from a difficult debut unscathed, producing crucial saves from Jacob Butterfield and Albert Adomah as a disappointing clash with Boro ended goalless, and he is ready for an extended spell in United’s starting line-up with manager Brian McDermott still to set a timescale on Kenny’s return. Asked if he was hopeful of a spate of opport

Leeds United: Cellino makes first public appearance as fight for Football League approval continues

Yorkshire Evening Post 24/2/14 by Phil Hay Massimo Cellino cast his eye over Leeds United’s 0-0 draw with Middlesbrough on Saturday – and then turned his attention back to his fight for Football League approval. The Italian made his first appearance in public since finalising a £25m takeover of Leeds as United and Boro shared the points in a low-key match at The Riverside. The result on Teesside did little to enhance the club’s chances of reaching the Championship play-offs but Cellino has a more pressing priority with the Football League still considering his bid to buy United. Cellino’s 75 per cent purchase remains subject to approval from the governing body and despite a belief in the 57-year-old’s camp that the Football League might make a ruling today, a decision is unlikely to come in the next 24 hours. Lawyers acting for Cellino and Gulf Finance House, United’s current owner, have supplied the Football League with documents outlining the terms of their deal and the details

Leeds United: Whites and Boro far from finished article

Yorkshire Evening Post 24/2/14 by Phil Hay There was urgency in the end but too little, too late from Middlesbrough and Leeds United. The Championship is renowned for churning out games like Saturday’s and the clubs involved have grown accustomed to finishing their seasons in no man’s land. Massimo Cellino holds finite knowledge of England’s second division but, as an observer in the stands at The Riverside, he would have doubted the suggestion that a potential winner of the play-offs was on display in front of him. Mid-table football between two mid-table teams was his reward for gracing Teesside with his presence. United’s impatient buyer – as yet lacking permission from the Football League to push through his £25m takeover of the club –put his head above the parapet in Middlesbrough, watching Leeds in the flesh for the first time since agreeing to purchase a 75 per cent stake. His son, Edoardo, made the trip too, suited and booted in Italian fashion. The message for the Celli

Bahrain's GFH more than doubles Q4 net profit

Arabian Business 23/2/14 Bahrain-based Gulf Finance House , whose unit is in the process of selling a majority stake in English soccer club Leeds United, said on Sunday its fourth-quarter net profit more than doubled due to revenue derived from investments. The investment firm made a net profit of $5.2 million in the three months to December 31, up from $2.5 million in the prior-year period, it said in a statement. It cited "income generated from investment advisory and the sale of investments" for the increase. It did not elaborate. However, for the 2013 full year, GFH's net profit fell 37.2 percent to $6.3 million. This decline came despite a 20 percent reduction in operating costs, as the firm continued to aggressively cut expenses in the wake of a number of debt restructurings in recent years. GFH, through its Dubai-based subsidiary GFH Capital, agreed to sell 75 percent of Leeds United to Italian Massimo Cellino earlier this month, subject to the takeover being

Butland delighted with performance on Leeds debut

Jack Butland was delighted with the start to his Leeds United career as he produced a man of the match performance in the 0-0 draw at Middlesbrough. Butland, who only arrived on loan for the remainder of the season on loan from Stoke City on Friday made crucial saves to deny Jacob Butterfield, Danny Graham and Albert Adomah as he helped Leeds to a first clean sheet in eleven games. Speaking to Sky Sports after being named man of the match, Butland said, "It was a great way to start for me and I was pleased to put in a performance. "My favourite save was the one-on-one in the second half." Butland was brought in by Leeds with regular goalkeeper Paddy Kenny ruled out through injury and after this performance by Butland; it will be hard to see how Kenny, who had been an ever-present before Saturday, will get back into the side. Brian McDermott says he wants to help on loan goalkeeper Jack Butland realise his dream of travelling with England to the World Cup finals in B

Middlesbrough 0 Leeds United 0: Faint promotion hopes fade for Yorkshire rivals

Yorkshire Post 22/2/14 A BORE of a stalemate saw the slim play-off prospects of both Leeds United and Boro recede further in a grim TV spectacle. The only noteworthy episode in the game saw the Teessiders make an unwanted entry into the record books after extending their goal drought to almost ten-and-a-half hours, with Aitor Karanka’s side having now not found the net in almost seven games since January 18. For United’s travelling support of 3,211, there was precious little to shout about on a day when prospective new owner Massimo Cellino was in attendance on Teesside as both sides played out their fourth 0-0 draw at the Riverside since the stadium opened in the mid-nineties. Brian McDermott pledged that Leeds would go out on the attack, but in the event, United produced an inhibited display low on quality and chances. It was a scrappy spectacle, with Boro carving out the best opportunities, without showing too much attacking competence over the ninety minutes, and feeling more

Middlesbrough 0 Leeds United 0: Positive point for Whites says McDermott

Yorkshire Evening Post 22/2/14 Boss Brian McDermott said he was happy to escape with a point against Middlesbrough in a game where debutant Whites goalkeeper Jack Butland made crucial blocks on Danny Graham and Kei Kamara. “That’s a positive point for us,” he said. “Middlesbrough made it difficult for us and had some good chances. “But Jack Butland was outstanding, the back four were excellent and the whole team put in a good shift. “When we become a good side, a side capable a challenging in this division, then maybe we could have nicked that game 1-0 but we are not quite where we want to be as a team yet. “But we kept a clean sheet and showed resilience, we just need to find that bit extra in the final third.” Middlesbrough head coach Aitor Karanka insists “the goals will arrive” after watching his shot-shy side extend their goal drought. “Yes it is six games without a goal and for that I am disappointed,” Karanka admitted. “I am always disappointed if we do not win. But if we

Middlesbrough 0-0 Leeds: Butland stretches Boro's winless run without scoring to six games

Mail 22/2/14 Middlesbrough's goal drought now stretches to six games and more than 10 hours after yet another Sky Bet Championship goalless draw at the Riverside. It was Boro's third successive goalless goal at the Riverside and while they edged the match on chances they could not beat in-form Leeds debutant goalkeeper Jack Butland. Boro started the brightest but their only real chance came on five minutes as Jacob Butterfield shrugged off a challenge to find Kei Kamara in space but his low 25-yard effort flew a yard outside the far post. Leeds' first threat was on 13 minutes as Jimmy Kebe sent full-back Lee Peltier overlapping down the right to cut inside then square towards Ross McCormack's run into the box - but Boro skipper Jonathan Woodgate arrived with a sliding tackle to block his shot. Then on 18 minutes Leeds broke down the left and Cameron Stewart drilled a low ball across the face of goal but Noel Hunt failed to make contact under pressure from Kenneth O

Leeds United: Loan ace Butland targets play-offs

Yorkshire Evening Post 22/2/14 by Phil Hay Jack Butland urged Leeds United to believe in their bid to make the Championship play-offs after joining the club on loan until the end of the season. The England goalkeeper, who was poised to make his debut at Middlesbrough today, said he was hopeful of seeing Leeds overturn an eight-point gap to the top six and claimed the play-offs were “certainly the target.” United signed Butland, right, on loan from Stoke City yesterday, bringing him to Elland Road with first-choice Paddy Kenny troubled by a long-standing ankle injury. Butland accepted a 93-day loan with 16 matches remaining and Leeds under pressure to make their move for the top six having slipped down the league gradually since Christmas. The 20-year-old said: “Everything that’s gone before needs to be forgotten. There’s 16 games now to focus on and in 16 games there’s a lot of points up for grabs. Eight points can swing in a matter of weeks. Reaching the play-offs is certainly t

Leeds United: Leeds need a plan for next season like Boro - Hay

Yorkshire Evening Post 22/2/14 by Phil Hay Meh. That’s what they say about Middlesbrough’s season. One hundred and 20 seconds of this afternoon’s game against Leeds United and Boro will set a club record for minutes without a goal. They’d struggle to find the net in a fishing shop. They say too that Aitor Karanka, their Spanish coach, has given up on the play-offs for the time being. He is relatively new to the Championship but deficits are deficits and Boro are chasing a ghost halfway down the league. Not this year, realistically. Leeds know the feeling. It would be classed as a waste for Boro were Karanka not using the back end of a mediocre season to model his squad in his own image. Boro were a lax, open team when he brought them to Leeds for his first game in November but their tactics – the Tony Mowbray philosophy – were not for him. Three months on, they are safe as houses; infuriatingly blunt but tight in the area where Mowbray’s teams were often so prone. The continental s

Jack Butland's excitement at loan move

Image 21/2/14 Jack Butland on his loan move… England international Jack Butland says his loan move from Premier League Stoke City ‘ticks all the boxes’. The move is the keeper’s second loan stint of the season, having spent the early part of the campaign at Barnsley, and he admits to being excited at joining United. “I think that the move is good for all parties,” said Jack. “I’m coming to a massive club with big expectations and hopefully a big promotion push. “It ticks all the boxes in terms of the pressures on the game and the crowds. It’s as close as you can get to Premier League football outside of the Premier League. I’m really excited to be here. “On the Stoke side of things they are happy that I’m playing and developing. Obviously for me it is a nice chance to get some games under my belt and perform well for Leeds. “The loan system has been very helpful for me to get out and get experience. I’m very lucky to have the chance to come to Leeds and hopefully there

Boro: Jack Butland set for Leeds debut?

Image 21/2/14 New signing in line for first start… New loan signing Jack Butland could be set to make his Leeds United debut at Middlesbrough on Saturday (12.15pm). Paddy Kenny, who has been an ever present this season, is struggling with an ankle injury, and England international Butland could be set to make his Whites debut. The keeper completed his loan move on friday morning and will go straight into the squad. A further injury doubt for the away clash is United defender Sam Byram who is suffering with a slight hamstring strain. “Paddy has had an ankle problem for a little while now,” explained the boss. “He has been playing since the Nottingham Forest game where he got that kick early on in the game. “You have got to give him credit for that. “Sam didn’t train on Thursday but he should join in on Friday and we will see how he is.” One selection boost for Brian McDermott will be the return of Cameron Stewart after he missed the Brighton clash due to a break his lo

Leeds United: Teenager McDaid close to signing two-year contract

Yorkshire Evening Post 21/2/14 Leeds United are close to completing the signing of teenage striker Robbie McDaid after fielding him as a trialist in a game against Sheffield Wednesday earlier this week. Leeds intend to give McDaid – currently on the books of Glenavon in Northern Ireland – a two-year contract after watching him score twice in an Under-17 game on Tuesday afternoon. McDaid, 18, is a highly-rated prospect who has featured in Northern Ireland’s Under-18 and Under-19 squads and is attracting interest from several English clubs. McDermott, who sourced players from Ireland during his years as Reading’s chief scout, has met with McDaid and his parents and is hopeful that United will tie up a transfer from Glenavon. “We want to try and do that deal if we can,” McDermott said. “He’s a young player. “I met him and his parents the other day and he’s a lovely lad.” Speaking this week, Glenavon manager Gary Hamilton said: “We don’t see any problems from our side. “The progres

Let’s build in summer – McDermott

Yorkshire Post 21/2/14 by Richard Sutcliffe BRIAN McDERMOTT last night insisted that he and prospective new Leeds United owner Massimo Cellino can work together despite neither seeking or receiving assurances over the future at a recent meeting between them. The pair last week enjoyed their first face-to-face get-together since the early days of the Italian coveting the Championship club. Cellino, believing he had a remit to run the club after reaching agreement over a £25m purchase of a majority stake, infamously sacked McDermott on January 31 only for GFH Capital, United’s owner, to reverse the decision a couple of days later. Since then, the two men have publicly been making the right noises about each other, both speaking of their shared love of music. The 57-year-old Italian will become McDermott’s boss providing he gets Football League approval for his 75 per cent buyout. The matter has been in the hands of the governing body for a fortnight but, as yet, no resolution has

Leeds United: Butland agrees loan move

Yorkshire Evening Post 21/2/14 by Phil Hay Leeds United have lined up the signing of goalkeeper Jack Butland on loan from Stoke City as an ankle injury threatens to break Paddy Kenny’s ever-present record. Butland is due to join Leeds on loan today, in time to make his debut against Middlesbrough at The Riverside tomorrow lunchtime. The deal comes with Kenny troubled once more by an injury he suffered at the end of December. United’s long-standing first choice was hurt in the first minute of a 2-1 loss to Nottingham Forest on December 29 but played on through January and the early weeks of this month with Jamie Ashdown recovering from toe surgery and 21-year-old Alex Cairns on the bench. Leeds hinted at a problem with Kenny earlier this week when they made an approach to Stoke for Butland and asked Tottenham Hotspur about the availability of Heurelho Gomes, Spurs’ out-of-favour Brazilian international. A deal over Butland’s £17,000-a-week salary was agreed between Leeds and Stoke

Middlesbrough v Leeds United: Whites given green light for all-out attack

Yorkshire Evening Post 21/2/14 by Phil Hay Goals are an acute problem for Middlesbrough but the club’s mid-table position and their relative safety owes much to a formation which gives away few. Boro fought out three successive 0-0 draws around transfer deadline day and have not scored themselves since January 18 but Brian McDermott will tell Leeds United to attack them tomorrow in the manner of a team who have little to lose. Leeds are at the 30-game mark and will have little interest in the play-offs this time next month if their season fails to ignite quickly, and McDermott has spent the 12 days between their loss at Brighton and tomorrow’s match at The Riverside stressing the importance of “attacking games.” United were beaten at Brighton – their 12th defeat of the term – by one of the few chances a laboured match produced but the absence of creativity around Albion’s box gave the home defence a comfortable night. The league table has worsened from Leeds’ perspective since th