Showing posts from March, 2023

Javi Gracia press conference highlights: Leeds United team news revealed as Gnonto and Wober both out - YEP 30/3/23

Leeds United head coach Javi Gracia hosts his pre-match press conference this afternoon ahead of the Whites’ trip to Arsenal this weekend Joe Donnohue Leeds’ trip to table-topping Arsenal on Saturday promises to be one of their toughest tests this season. The Gunners have been imperious at home and as the season nears a conclusion, Mikel Arteta’s side will be looking to avoid any slip-ups in order to keep their hopes of a Premier League title alive. Javi Gracia will be without Tyler Adams this weekend, whilst Willy Gnonto and Max Wober are both doubts after picking up injuries over the international break. Leeds midfielder Adams underwent surgery on a hamstring injury and is expected to be out for an extended period, which could render him absent until pre-season. Despite Gracia’s reluctance to discuss injured players in previous press conferences, the Spaniard is expected to provide an update this afternoon. Gracia on Wober and Gnonto I’m sorry but I cannot clarify becau

Leeds United 49ers and Javi Gracia decision key to green light for summer Plan A - YEP 30/3/23

So much of Leeds United's potential summer 2024 transfer window activity will be dictated by the 'r' word but regardless of their division, there are areas Victor Orta will have to target. By Graham Smyth Dropping out of the Premier League, indeed even the idea of battling against relegation for a second successive season, was deemed 'impossible' by Andrea Radrizzani at the outset of a campaign that has not quite gone to plan. Their Premier League win over Wolves, the second of Javi Gracia's Elland Road tenure, lifted them to 14th in the table and into the positions Radrizzani expected to be competing for, yet they started that day just prior to the international break second from bottom. Relegation fears were at the heart of the decision to sack Jesse Marsch in February and he was eventually replaced by Gracia, after a number of initial candidates elected not to take the Leeds job. Gracia's arrival, which broadly met with the approval of the fanba

Leeds United's expectation on Tyler Adams post-op recovery as duo present minor pre-Arsenal issues - YEP 28/3/23

Leeds United are awaiting a post-op assessment of Tyler Adams' hamstring but don't anticipate his absence becoming a long-term one. By Graham Smyth Adams went for surgery last week, having sustained a problem in training that kept him out of the Wolves game at Molineux and the US Men's National Team fixtures during the international break. The midfielder, a key part of Javi Gracia's Whites side and among the candidates for Leeds' Player of the Season, has been on crutches since the operation but the club's medical department will soon be able to determine the length of time he will be missing. Whilst it is currently unknown if he will make it back in time to play any further part in this season's action, the YEP understands his pre-season involvement this summer is not in doubt because the club does not expect him to be a long-term absentee. Leeds also have injury doubts over Willy Gnonto and Max Wober, who both picked up mercifully minor knocks on

Leeds’ Tyler Adams set for extended spell on sidelines after surgery on hamstring injury - The Athletic 28/3/23

By Phil Hay Leeds United have suffered a fresh injury blow after midfielder Tyler Adams was forced to undergo surgery on a hamstring injury. The USMNT international has been sent for an operation on the problem he suffered before the international break, ruling him out of a longer stretch of the Premier League run-in. Leeds are in the process of establishing the exact length of Adams’ time out and are expected to make further assessments next week but an extended absence comes as a blow to head coach Javi Gracia. Adams damaged a muscle during a training session ahead of Leeds’ 4-2 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers on March 18 and was forced to pull out of international duty with the USMNT, remaining in England where he went under the knife. The 24-year-old, who joined Leeds from RB Leipzig last summer, has been a prominent part of United’s line-up this term, starting 24 times in the top flight. Leeds are 14th in the table, two points above the bottom three, and have 11 match

Andrea Radrizzani reflects on Leeds United journey and issues message after landmark success - YEP 27/3/23

Whites chairman Andrea Radrizzani has reflected on a particular six-year journey within Leeds United Football Club upon a landmark success. Lee Sobot Leeds United Ladies were disbanded in 2014 after their funding was withdrawn under chairman Massimo Cellino but the team reformed as Leeds Ladies and then came back within the club’s umbrella under new owner Radrizzani in June 2017. Six years on and now named Leeds United Women, the fourth tier team have brought back silverware to West Yorkshire having won the FA National League Plate on Sunday afternoon by defeating Division One Midlands leaders Stourbridge Women. The side last savoured silverware 13 years ago and Radrizzani has taken to social media to issue his pride at the team’s continually evolving journey. “We had to restart woman’s football at Leeds United around six years ago,” said the chairman. “Look at our team now. Keep growing, you make your club proud every day. Congrats.” Whites captain Liam Cooper also offered h

Leeds United's Elland Road home reopens after 48-hour lockdown over security threat - Yorkshire Post 26/3/23

Elland Road reopened on Sunday morning after a 48-hour lockdown. Stuart Rayner Police arrived at the home of Leeds United before most staff had arrived for work on Friday morning and advised that it shut after a security threat was received. The ticket office, club shop and offices of the club and its foundation were immediately shut as a noticeable police presence investigated at the ground. Finally, West Yorkshire Police felt able to give the go-ahead for it to reopen on Sunday morning. Fortunately for Leeds, it had not been due to host a game this weekend. With club football on an international break, the next match at the ground is not due until April 4, when Nottingham Forest are scheduled to visit in the Premier League.

Elland Road: Man arrested in connection with 'security threat' incident at Leeds United's stadium - YEP 24/3/23

Police have arrested a man in connection with the incident that caused the closure of Leeds United’s Elland Road stadium. Tom Coates Police were called to Elland Road following reports of a security threat to the premises and investigations were launched to establish the credibility of the threat. The club’s offices were closed on the advice of police, as was the club shop. Earlier today, West Yorkshire Police said: “Police were called to attend at Elland Road football stadium following reports of a security threat to the premises. Investigations are currently ongoing to establish the credibility of that threat. The report was received at 9:49pm last night.” A 20-year-old man has now been arrested and a spokesperson for West Yorkshire Police said “enquiries remain ongoing”. An earlier statement issued by Leeds United read: “Leeds United’s offices, ticket office, Foundation offices and club shop at Elland Road will be closed until further notice on the advice of the police. We

Leeds United issue statement as Elland Road is forced to shut on police advice after report of threat - YEP 24/3/23

Leeds United released a statement on Friday morning stating that club facilities at Elland Road had been closed following police advice Joe Donnohue Officers from West Yorkshire Police were seen gathered outside the West Stand at Elland Road on Friday morning prior to the football club’s official communication confirming temporary suspension of operations at the ground on police advice. The statement reads: "Leeds United’s offices, ticket office, Foundation offices and club shop at Elland Road will be closed until further notice on the advice of the police. We apologise for any inconvenience and we will inform the public when normal service resumes." West Yorkshire Police have said ‘investigations are currently ongoing’ to establish the credibility of a threat received yesterday evening. In the meantime, staff have been evacuated from Elland Road. “Police were called to attend at Elland Road football stadium following reports of a security threat to the premises. In

Peter Ridsdale, Leeds United and the struggle to forgive – 20 years on - The Athletic 23/3/23

Daniel Taylor and Phil Hay This is part of a series of articles inspired by questions from our readers. So thank you to Adam S for the inspiration for this piece after he asked us to reflect upon Peter Ridsdale’s Leeds United, two decades on. Would it be asking too much, all these years on, to think there might ever come a day when the supporters of Leeds United can reflect on Peter Ridsdale’s role without putting him in a little pair of devil’s horns? Maybe it is simply impossible given the history, the sequence of events that means ‘doing a Leeds’ has its own Wikipedia page and the depth of feeling that was stirred when this proud old club was brought to its knees. Ridsdale has always been held responsible for creating a dream that turned into a nightmare. So, yes, don’t count on too much forgiveness any time soon. Far more likely, the typical response would be that he deserves all he gets, that he left Leeds financially shipwrecked and, bloody hell, just look at how long it

Leeds United’s steps toward Premier League initiative as CEO Angus Kinnear takes new responsibility - YEP 22/3/23

Leeds United have already taken steps towards full compliance with a newly-launched Premier League initiative and confirmed a new facet to CEO Angus Kinnear’s role at Elland Road. By Graham Smyth The division launched its Fan Engagement Standard [FES] on Wednesday, outlining the standards expected of its member clubs with regards to 'meaningful engagement' with supporters. Unanimously approved by the Premier League clubs in November 22, the plan lists five themes seen as integral to a long-term commitment to fan engagement - namely leadership and culture, listening, collaborating and participating, sharing, and learning and improving. A Premier League statement said: "Each theme is linked to a series of core commitments and activities. Collectively these form a baseline for club engagement that sets minimum standards, with defined methods of consulting, reporting and review, each designed to promote transparency and continuous improvement." Leeds, as one of

Willy Gnonto opens up on Old Trafford 'silence', head coach hesitation and driving lessons - YEP 22/3/23

Leeds United forward Willy Gnonto has quickly established himself as a first-team player during his time at Elland Road Joe Donnohue The 19-year-old Italy international joins up with Roberto Mancini’s Azzurri squad this week ahead of UEFA Euro 2024 qualifiers versus England and Malta. Gnonto is expected to feature prominently during this month’s international break and is thought highly of by the former Manchester City boss and Premier League-winning coach. Mancini has previously questioned why no club in Italy chose to move for the former FC Zurich attacker, allowing Leeds to swoop last summer, securing his signature for £3.8 million. Speaking to Italian daily newspaper Corriere della Sera whilst at the Coverciano training base, Gnonto said: “I will always be grateful to Inter [Milan], but I don't see it as a missed opportunity. I had to make a choice, I went to Switzerland to play and I think I made the right one for me and my family." Gnonto left Internazionale’s

Leeds United summer transfer's patience is finally rewarded and Whites’ Mr Calm comes in for praise - YEP 22/3/23

Leeds United title winner Tony Dorigo was delighted for one Whites player in particular at Molineux as victory brought a dramatic change in the Premier League table. By Tony Dorigo Javi Gracia's calm touchline presence is so important for Leeds United, especially in these highly pressurised relegation battles. When you look on the sidelines and you do as a player, you look to your manager at certain times for guidance, if he's losing it then it filters through to the rest of the team. I look down at the technical area and Javi Gracia is involved in the games, you can tell he's feeling it but at the vital times he controls himself well. There's no doubt that transfers on and whether it's a message or a calm observation he's the one that can deliver that, because he's composed. He’s Mr Calm. Quite how he managed that at Molineux I don't quite know. The game down there last season was pretty exciting but this one even topped that. The importance was a

Junior Firpo's unseen Leeds United influence revealed as Gracia tactic unlocks Barcelona potential - YEP 20/3/23

Leeds United have looked to utilise width more often since the appointment of Javi Gracia as head coach which has especially benefitted left-back Junior Firpo Joe Donnohue Leeds’ perceived lack of width under Javi Gracia’s predecessor Jesse Marsch was a bone of contention amongst Whites fans throughout the American’s tenure as head coach at Elland Road. Since arriving, Gracia has delivered seven points from four Premier League games, including wins over relegation rivals Southampton and most recently Wolverhampton Wanderers. The head coach has not explicitly stated his intention to play with greater width, but his team have certainly operated using all available space on the pitch. Combined with a more balanced, level-headed approach – as seen by Leeds’ reluctance to engage Brighton’s central defenders in possession, instead waiting for specific pressing triggers – United have in recent matches resembled a team who appear more mid-table than relegation fodder. There remains a l

'If I'm honest' - Leeds United striker admits aiming for personal glory as well as team objective - YEP 20/3/23

Leeds United Under-21s forward Mateo Joseph says he is keeping a tally of his goals this season as the young Whites eye promotion to Premier League 2 Division 1 Joe Donnohue Joseph has netted on 15 occasions in PL2 this season, firing Leeds to the summit of the Division 2 table with just three games remaining. The young Whites know they will have a fight on their hands to secure automatic promotion and the second tier title, but a three-point gap at the top means it is well within their grasp. Ahead of the international break, Leeds’ youngsters defeated Sunderland by three goals to one in front of close to 4,000 spectators at Elland Road. Joseph scored twice to bring his total for the season across all competitions to 16 in 19 appearances. “We feel really well, the dressing room is very happy, we have three finals to play now if we want to get promoted. We're looking forward to them. Now the international break, [time to] rest, improve our weaknesses and let's keep goin

Leeds United can beat Wolverhampton Wanderers but not the craziness - Yorkshire Post 20/3/23

YOU can try as hard as you like to fight the craziness of Leeds United, but defeating it is easier said than done. Stuart Rayner It was laid bare in a 4-2 win full of sub-plots. As if six goals and 33 shots was not enough, Wolverhampton Wanderers had a penalty refused by the video assistant referee and two red cards – one for a substitute who never made it on. Marcelo Bielsa and Jesse Marsch were exponents of chaos theory, in-your-face styles playing to the Elland Road gallery, but the current coach prefers control. Leeds had it for large parts of a game they led 3-0 only for substitute Adama Traore to take it off them and run away with it. Once Jack Harrison scored his second goal in as many games, the Whites played as they wanted. As against Brighton and Hove Albion they fell back into a narrow 4-4-1-1. It gave plenty of space wide to work in but this was Wolves. For all Luke Ayling had a hard time and Junior Firpo picked up a booking and escaped the penalty shout, giving