Article by Ben Dixon
A month that promised so much for Leeds United fans is slowly turning into a month we can’t wait to end. Transfers were promised, and departures were denied. As January progresses both are seeming less and less likely, and frustration is growing. The main topic of conversation is Luciano Becchio. Our Luciano. Our Luciano, without which, we would be bottom of the table by 6 points. In the last 2 weeks he has been linked with no fewer than 5 Premier League clubs including Wigan and the inevitable Norwich, a situation that hasn’t been aided by Neil Warnock and his backroom staff.
Mick Jones saying that we would struggle to hold on to our two best players this season ( Byram and Becchio) if a substantial enough offer came in was a stupid thing to do. Not only does it alert Premier League clubs to the pairs availability, but it also outlines our unbelievable lack of ambition to get to the Premier League. Surely someone of some power at Leeds will soon notice that selling your best players isn’t the formula to success? Warnock then fuelled the Becchio speculation after the embarrassing defeat to Barnsley at the weekend, by saying that Becchio’s head wasn’t on football. And he topped it off by leaving him out of the squad to face Birmingham in the FA Cup replay on Tuesday night. The official club line on this was that Becchio was ill, whether you believe this or not is up to you.
If anything is irking Leeds fans more than the speculation about potential departures, it is the seeming lack of activity in the form of bringing players in to the club. Transfers were promised but as yet have not materialised. Only Michael Tongue has been bought in permanently so far, and although the signing of Ross Barkley is a step in the right direction, it is only a 1 month loan, which just isn’t what the club needs. Warnock always seems to be ‘confident’ of getting a “couple of players” in before the weekend’s match, yet again, these never seem to appear and Warnock’s constant stream of excuses is beginning to wear very thin on the ground with some supporters. All the blame cannot be placed firmly on Warnock though. GFH Capital have suddenly gone very quiet on the social networking scene. Substantial funds were promised to Neil Warnock, which again begs the question, Where is it all??
This lack of activity has caused a fair bit of frustration from fans towards Warnock with many wanting him sacked. It’s not just the transfer situation though, oh no. It’s the football, or lack of it. Hoofball as it is now becoming known as is pissing a lot of people off. Sure if it was working then I’m sure it would be appreciated, however it’s not. And appreciation is one thing that it’s not getting. It’s getting panned. And possibly getting Warnock sacked, or it should according to the majority of Leeds fans. Recent performances have been atrocious with Saturdays defeat at Barnsley being to final straw and providing the catalyst for many fans to vent their frustration at Warnock. His apparent resistance to the substitutes bench, playing players in their wrong positions and blaming everyone but himself for the defeat has caused him to lose the Leeds fans trust and belief. Add to this he has the joint lowest win record of Leeds managers in recent history, then says he thinks he’s doing a great job, and the result is inevitable. Hopefully.
So overall not a great deal to be cheerful about, apart from the fact that we still own Luciano. For how much longer only he knows, but I don’t think I’m the only one feeling a little bit of De Ja Vu. Howson, Snodgrass and possibly Becchio. Selling your best players isn’t the way to the Premier League. I just hope that someone at Leeds realises this and does something about it. Before it’s too late….