Showing posts from January, 2024

Leeds United's £1m transfer slip and 'personality test' dictates final days of January transfer window — YEP 30/1/24

Leeds United’s wait to strengthen Daniel Farke’s squad during the January transfer window has reached the final two days, with the club yet to announce any new faces despite the departure of six players. By Joe Donnohue Luke Ayling, Djed Spence, Lewis Bate, Darko Gyabi, Leo Hjelde and Jeremiah Mullen have all departed Elland Road in various different guises. Four are out on loan, but only two are expected to return to Thorp Arch at the end of the season. Four are also defenders which, broadly speaking, is an area fans and Farke know needs bolstering during the next 48 hours. United’s boss has suggested more than once this month there are ‘one or two’ positions where the squad could be stronger or better-equipped in the event of injury and suspension. Farke has not said so explicitly, but trawl popular fan forums or social networking sites and the cry to sign a full-back is almost as unanimous as the synchronised chanting of club anthem Marching On Together before kick-off at El

Leeds United confirm defender transfer as fee details revealed in Championship switch — YEP 30/1/24

Leeds United have confirmed the sale of young defender Leo Hjelde to fellow Championship side Sunderland on a permanent deal. By Joe Donnohue Hjelde joined Leeds from Scottish Premiership giants Celtic in the summer of 2021 and has made a handful of appearances at Elland Road but has been deemed surplus to requirements by manager Daniel Farke. The Norwegian youth international had 18 months remaining on his Elland Road contract and this season played a peripheral role in the first-team setup. Hjelde has not featured under Farke since August when United were beaten on penalties by Salford City in the Carabao Cup Second Round. The 20-year-old has just 45 minutes of Championship action to his name this term, having been substituted at half-time in Leeds' season opener versus Cardiff City. Farke has instead chosen Sam Byram and Junior Firpo as his starting left-backs this term with Hjelde featuring more frequently for Leeds' Under-21 group. His final appearance in a Leeds

Leeds United 1-1 Plymouth Argyle: The good of the game — Square Ball 29/1/24

MAGIC Written by: Moxcowhite • Daniel Chapman There can’t have been many better venues for assessing the magical status of the FA Cup than Elland Road this Saturday, treated to a weekend tie for only the second time in eleven years, and it’s Plymouth. The visiting fans sang, ‘You’re in the same league as Argyle’, taunting that Leeds are not famous anymore, but it wasn’t any more about fame or status than Maidstone United’s miffedness at drawing Ipswich (until they beat them) and now Sheffield Wednesday or Coventry (until they beat them): it’s just hard to get excited about playing a team we’re not bothered about, and were due to play twice already anyway. The FA Cup should and still could be a thrilling novelty but there’s not much drearier than drawing a divisional rival, especially when that division is the Championship. The 46 league games at this level mix standard EFL slog with the pressure caused by the financial rewards on offer for promotion, and Leeds bring their own dos

Leeds United's unsaid full-back difficulty and late January transfer window expectation — YEP 29/1/24

Leeds United supporters are waiting impatiently to discover what 49ers Enterprises will serve up in their first real January transfer window and hoping it's nothing like the last two. By Graham Smyth January has been a learning month for the Whites in recent times, thanks to mistakes of a very different nature. The 2021 window taught us very little, given that no one arrived and Leeds carried on their merry way to finish in the Premier League top 10. But the same tactic in 2022 brought a very different result, Bielsa paying with his job for a poor run of results against top six sides having failed to be convinced by the mid-season market options the club put to him. The brush with relegation that followed was too close for comfort, even if the final day escape gave owner Andrea Radrizzani reason to run across the Brentford pitch in celebration. The lesson was that if you don't get your summer strengthening right, January strengthening becomes vital. And if you don't get

Leeds United chinos exchange, returnee welcome and keeper message in off-camera Plymouth moments — YEP 28/1/24

Leeds United are off to Plymouth Argyle twice in the next month thanks to their FA Cup draw. By Graham Smyth Daniel Farke was asked on Friday if he would consider sending his goalkeeper up for set-pieces if the game was tied at 1-1 in the 90th minute and the hypothetical became reality at Elland Road. The Whites boss resisted any temptation to send Illan Meslier into the attack, though, as the hosts created and wasted good chances to win the tie. The stalemate means Leeds will visit Home Park Stadium in league and cup action in the space of a few weeks, adding to an already-packed schedule. Here's the YEP take on Saturday's stalemate. Good day Jaidon Anthony Leeds United's on-loan winger has been through personal tragedy lately, losing his mum, but wanted to remain involved with Daniel Farke's squad. When he dribbled his way into the Plymouth area and curled the ball beautifully into the net you could perhaps understand why he chose to play through the pain. T

Rebooted: O’Leary said he didn’t want Leeds job – then christened himself ‘Boss’ — The Athletic 2/4/20

By Phil Hay The rumours were rife and the pin-point detail in George Graham’s pre-match spiel gave the game away. He would not usually overanalyse the opposition, but there was nothing he couldn’t tell Leeds United’s squad about their next fixture. Graham knew too much. The job at Tottenham Hotspur was his. His players suspected as much. They’d read newspaper after newspaper naming him as Tottenham’s choice to replace Christian Gross. The build-up to Graham’s last league match as Leeds manager, a 3-3 draw at White Hart Lane in September 1998, merely confirmed the inevitable. Robert Molenaar, one of his defenders, saw the writing on the wall. “He wasn’t someone who talked a lot about individual players, but before the game with Spurs, he told us everything,” Molenaar says. “It was so detailed, like he’d been studying them for a while. We weren’t stupid. We knew why he’d been looking so closely.” The deal was ratified days later and, in a diplomatic sense, Graham was doing noth

Daniel Farke reveals Leeds United striker hope, experimentation and new opinion on Georginio Rutter — YEP 28/1/24

Leeds United boss Daniel Farke says he hopes Joel Piroe has saved his goals for the Whites' upcoming games after the striker drew a blank upon returning to the starting line-up against Plymouth Argyle. By Joe Donnohue The Pilgrims largely thwarted Dutch forward Piroe at Elland Road on Saturday, limiting the 24-year-old to just two attempts on Conor Hazard's goal as the two teams could not be separated. Leeds' 1-1 draw means a replay will be required to decide which team progresses to the Fifth Round of the FA Cup, the result putting an end to United's 100 per cent start to 2024 with five wins from their five previous matches. Piroe has recently had to settle for a place on the bench, after starting in the majority of Leeds' games during the first half of the season. A return to form for Patrick Bamford has led Farke to persist with the experienced striker ahead of Piroe, while tweaking creative lynchpin Georginio Rutter's position on the field. "Obv

Daniel Farke pokes fun at Leeds United rivals but FA Cup draw was no joke - Graham Smyth's Verdict — YEP 28/1/24

What's worse than one trip to Plymouth Argyle? The jokes wrote themselves after Leeds United's FA Cup stalemate with the Pilgrims, but as Daniel Farke cheekily pointed out, there's something even worse still. By Graham Smyth A 1-1 draw in Saturday's Elland Road tie wasn't quite the last thing Farke needed, with some long away days coming up and a Saturday February 17 lunchtime league visit to Plymouth already in the books. Defeat was the last thing he wanted, insisting on Friday that he'd rather take a replay and another 640-mile round trip to Home Park than an exit from the competition. There was no way he could dress up the draw and resulting additional fixture, in an already hectic season, as a good result but handily there was a worse fate to point to. "It's not a non-league side or even the sixth tier, even a side from the sixth tier can win on this level, as we've learned today," he quipped in his post-match press conference, pointi

How Daniel Farke reacted to Leeds United FA Cup draw and why Crysencio Summerville sat out — YEP 27/1/24

Leeds United are taking the Leeds United route in the FA Cup according to Daniel Farke, whose men must now travel to Plymouth Argyle for a replay after a 1-1 draw. By Graham Smyth Although Farke insisted before the game that he would rather take a replay than exit the competition, another away day at Plymouth is not what his Whites need right now with a number of injuries hampering an already small squad. They took control early on and went ahead through Jaidon Anthony’s fine individual goal in the first half, but were unable to keep Argyle under their thumb as much in the second half. Plymouth levelled with a counter attack finished off by Adam Randell 17 minutes from time to make it a proper cup tie and though Leeds created a number of good chances to win it they were thwarted by goalkeeper Conor Hazard. Farke was not in the mood to be overly critical of his players, despite his desire to avoid a replay. “Leeds United, we never go the easy way, that's it,” he said. “Obvious

Leeds United 1 Plymouth Argyle 1: Scintillating, then sloppy, Whites fail to take short route to FA Cup fifth round — Yorkshire Post 27/1/24

Sometimes you wonder if Leeds United have some deep-seated philosophical objection to doing things the easy way. By Stuart Rayner For an hour they were turning on the glitz against Plymouth Argyle, Georginio Rutter on sparkling form, Jaidon Anthony scoring what will surely turn out to be one of the goals of the FA Cup fourth round. The fifth was there for the taking – and Leeds were too shy to take it. Patrick Bamford missed a stoppage-time chance as the Whites added a second trip to Plymouth to a February which also takes them to Bristol City and Swansea City folowing a 1-1 draw. Still, manager Daniel Farke did say before the game if the scores were level after 90 minutes he would rather draw than lose and with Sheffield United going out, Leeds and Sheffield Wednesday are the only teams in Sunday's fifth-round draw, albeit with "or"s after their names. What made it so frustrating was how well Leeds had played without killing the game off. Earlier in the sea

Leeds United 1 Plymouth Argyle 1: Winger strikes but replay awaits, fifth round draw details — YEP 27/1/24

Leeds United took on Plymouth Argyle at Elland Road on Saturday afternoon in the fourth round of the FA Cup. By Lee Sobot Leeds United will face another long trip to Plymouth Argyle for an FA Cup replay after being pegged back for a 1-1 draw in Saturday afternoon's fourth round clash at Elland Road. Jaidon Anthony fired Leeds ahead with a terrific goal just after the half-hour mark but Plymouth equalised as Adam Randell finished off a counter in the 73rd minute, sending the game to a replay. The draw for the fifth round of the competition will take place on Sunday afternoon, live on ITV from around 2pm ahead of the 2.30pm kick-off between Liverpool and Norwich City at Anfield. Leeds or Plymouth will be ball no 12 in a draw for the last 16 which includes Maidstone United after their shock 2-1 win at United's Championship promotion rivals Ipswich Town. Whites boss Daniel Farke made six changes to his side for Saturday's cup tie and rested star man Crysencio Summer

Leeds United are smelling blood in the Championship’s royal rumble — The Athletic 25/1/24

By Phil Hay A strand of Jesse Marsch’s defence against the decision by Leeds United to sack him, on a flat Monday lunchtime after an even flatter Sunday at Nottingham Forest, was that they held a game in hand. Seventeenth place in the Premier League would have been 13th had they earned three points against Manchester United away, the spare in question. Simon Jordan, the host of the podcast on which Marsch was protesting, has never been known for swallowing much and was not having that comment. But away from the subject of Leeds ditching Marsch, they were touching on the perennial debate about the true value of matches in hand. For a club in the habit of losing, which Leeds were last season, they usually act as a psychological comfort blanket, until the point where they have to be played. For a team in the habit of winning, which Leeds demonstrably are now, stockpiled fixtures are a hindrance and the poor relation of points on the board; one reason it suited them to shoehorn in a vi

Every word Daniel Farke said on Leeds United team news, Archie Gray diagnosis and Charlie Cresswell shift — YEP 26/1/24

By Joe Donnohue Daniel, can we begin with team news? "We have a few players who will not be available for this game. Archie Gray is definitely out for this game. I would still say good news because it is nothing with the ligament, the ACL, just a hit and a bruise but at the moment it's not possible for him to join us in team training. Hopefully, at some point during next week, he will be back but he will definitely be out for this game. Also, Daniel James will be out. It's a little strain. I think he will also be out for the Bristol game, so a couple of weeks. I hope he is back available for the next home game but this FA Cup game and also the Bristol game he will definitely miss. We are also still without Pascal Struijk and all the other topics, so it's more or less what we spoke about." What type of strain is it for Dan James? "Abductor strain, so he slipped during the game. It's not too bad but he will definitely be out for a couple of weeks an

Analysis: Mature Leeds United's patience and calm prospering in the Elland Road chaos — Yorkshire Post 26/1/24

Patience and calmness can be difficult to find at a football ground as passionate as Elland Road, but Leeds United were rewarded at home to Norwich City on Wednesday. By Stuart Rayner Marcelo Bielsa and Jesse Marsch tried to embrace and even feed the chaos from the home dugout, with varying degrees of success. The current incumbent, Daniel Farke, has brought a serenity not to the stands but certainly the pitch and press conference room with his assured steering of the ship through a course he knows well. Fourth in the Championship after 29 games – 28 for the top three – is not where the Whites want to be, but as Farke consistently says, only where they are after 46 matters. Twenty-six days into a 32-day transfer window they have lost both specialist right-backs without bringing one in. Farke keeps calm and carries on. It was how his team approached their 1-0 win over Norwich. Particularly for the first 20 minutes of the second half there was audible frustration that Leeds