Everton sign up Beckford whilst Leeds agree deal for Barnard TSS January 20, 2010 Leeds United 81 Comments As suspected, the supposed end to the Beckford saga was a false dawn as Simon Grayson has suggested Beckford has already signed a pre-contract with Everton where he’ll leave for at the end of the season. Whilst the Beckford news is hardly a shock, Sky Sports are reporting something a little more interesting alongside it. They’re claiming that Leeds United have agreed a deal with Southend United to bring in Lee Barnard for one of those “undisclosed fees” our Kenneth is so keen on. The second part is great news if true. Barnard is a more than capable striker who should add a new dimension to the Leeds front line. Anyone who saw Becchio miss a header from six-yards at the end of yesterdays game and Mike Grella prove largely uneffecient throughout would have been left under no illusions that Leeds need to strengthen the front line. Kudos to Simon for realising that. Lee Barnard is 25 years old and has had a bit of an uneventful career before joining Southend in 2008. Since then, the forward has made 73 league appearences for the club, scoring 35 goals in the process. Coincidentally, Barnard started his career at this weekends opponents Tottenham. He spent six years under contract at White Hart Lane moving around on loan to various clubs, but never made it in Spurs’ first team. As for Beckford, although I aren’t even slightly surprised I am disappointed. The team is clearly unsettled at the minute which has brought with it some dismal performances and a poor run of form and I can’t see how this will help matters. I have no doubts this is why he pulled himself off the transfer list and would bet money he’s getting a nice signing on fee for his troubles. It’s simply a waiting game for him now and I can’t help but question how much desire he’ll have to play for the Whites in the meantime. This is probably why Grayson is looking to bring Barnard in now.