Once the club had responded to yesterdays revelation that Jermaine Beckford had handed a transfer request in, one thing struck me as unusual – the date.

"That" Jermaine Beckford goal

It’s not so much the fact that the transfer request had already been handed in before the Manchester United game, that didn’t surprise me at all as I expected him to leave as soon as Newcastle announced their interest, and besides, we’d been hearing them particular rumours for a week. No, the thing that surprised me was the fact that Leeds United published the date.

For a club that likes to keep the fans in the dark as much as possible, and for a club that has kept this transfer request secret for a week, was there really any need for them to reveal the date the transfer request was handed in? What could they possibly be hoping to achieve by doing so?

It makes me wonder if Newcastle United’s unsettling of Beckford through the media has caused a rift between Leeds United and Beckford – or more precisely, Bates and Beckford.

Ken Bates, Shaun Harvey or whoever was responsible for publishing that date aren’t stupid. The reaction to the Leeds United fans discovering the date of the transfer request, as you can imagine, was hardly a positive one. Leeds United (by which I mean the people running the club) will have known exactly how the fans would react, so for me; this seems to be a parting gift to Beckford as he leaves Leeds United FC.

Of course, I’m only speculating here, but the thing I’d guess caused this particular rift is the ‘take it or leave it’ offer Newcastle United issued shortly before the request was announced. If Leeds United are short on offers, then Newcastle United’s offer of £1.5m may be the only option they have. It’s a clever game Newcastle have played, ensuring they get Beckford for the cheapest possible price, but Bates has to cover his bases and by turning the fans against Beckford, when he does leave for less than we expected, we’ll be glad to see the back of him.

For me, I hate the way this whole thing has been carried out, but I refuse to hold anything against Jermaine Beckford. If someone was offering me three times the money I’m on now to do the same job elsewhere, I’d be off in a flash. Loyalty and emotion are rare traits in footballers, and Beckford has no reason to offer either to Leeds United.

He’s scored a lot of goals for Leeds United, provided us with a lot of good memories and will leave on the back of his famous goal at Old Trafford, which knocked Scum out of the cup. Leeds United will move on. We’ll find a replacement and we’ll still be crowned champions in May regardless of what Beckford does, because it’s Simon Grayson leading the team and in Grayson, we trust.

  • Grumpy Older Man

    Do you remember when Bates failed to secure then loan from Leeds City Council to buy Thorpe Arch? Well he did what he always does, he blamed and attacked everyone he could to distract from the reality. Their is a danger given your last two posts of you making a simular mistake, your line (which your entitiled to as its your blog) seems to be blame anyone but Beckford. Good luck with that….

    • TSS

      I think you’re missing my point. There was no need to publish the date. Beckford wouldn’t have been anyones favourite person either way, but in doing so, they knew they’d make matters worse. If he leaves for £1.25m now, the reaction is more likely to be good riddance than it is ‘we’ve been robbed!’

    • TSS

      PS. The first post wasn’t mine. It was written by Gledders. By the time I got back from work it had disappeared.

  • Kevin

    As a Newcastle United fan I found your article brilliant in the fact it looked at the true facts. I don’t personally believe we have caused a rift as it has been known for a long time we are interested in Beckford and a lot of what is written in the papers is pure speculation. Bates is now panicking in the fact that he is going to get very little in value for someone who should be a very saleable asset if not for the contract length left. This is his fault and he is now going to cover his backside as Bates has always done for years. Apparently Beckford fell out with the hierarchy at Leeds a while ago and has never looked liked staying.

    I may be wrong here and would be interested in your views but we are taking a chance on Beckford as he is not proven and maybe a total flop in a higher league or alternativally he could be the next Andy Cole.

    Trying to get £3m for him is slightly unreal given he can sign a precontract now and join for nothing in the summer thats if we are still interested in him.
    I believe the best alternative to Leeds is ourselves a similar club in size supporter loyalty and passion rather than a Bolton, Hull etc or Villa where he may not get a game.

    Many thanks and all the best for the rest of the season

  • Roger the Dodger

    Kevin thats the point though isnt it, its unrealistic to get 3m or whatever figure it is but thats the choice pay it now or wait till the summer

    they are prepared to let him walk for nothing if he gets us promoted.

  • James Morris

    Beckford wants to play at the highest level to try and prove himself. It is looking likely that Newcastle will go straight up this season so it is a fabulous opportunity for him. I am in the same boat as you, and I won’t hold anything against him. He could have taken his bat and ball home at the beginning of the season but he has been professional and ‘helped’ towards what we are trying to achieve. I actually think that we will end up playing against him next season should we get promoted. There is no way that he is Premiership quality and when Newcastle do get promoted they will invest to ensure they can stay there. He will end up on loan at another club next season. MOT.. :@)

  • Ed Harrison

    Beckford is a risk for Newcastle and will not play in every game as we have two excellent youngsters in Andy Carroll and Nile Ranger coming through – and I’m worried that the Leeds fans don’t think much of his character. Newcastle’s success this season has been because of the tremendous team spirit and effort shown by our lads (completely absent last season) – and it would be worrisome if Jermaine upset that.
    BTW I echo Kevin;s thoughts above – hope Leeds are in the PL the season after next – that’s where you deserve to be – after going through hell and high water for your team over the last few seasons- wonderful performance at Manchester United too!

  • MikeLufc

    As far as I am aware there has been no statement from Simon, correct me if I am wrong.
    In Simon we trust not Beckford who at 26 has not got a long time to cash in on his value and he will not have forgotten that about 3 years ago he was fitting car windscreens for peanuts.
    We have had value from him and he gave us back our pride last sunday.If he goes let him go with our best wishes.

  • Gilesleftfoot

    I’ll be sorry to see Beckford go (I wouldn’t be sorry to see Bates go on the other hand), but good luck to the lad.

    • TSS

      I don’t think there’s many that would be sorry to see the back of Bates. Especially since the TA disaster.

  • Harry

    I think your hatred of Bates is clouding your vision as you’ve got this the wrong way round – Rubery revealed the transfer request on Radio 5 which forced Leeds hand. I think you are naive to think Leeds have a duty to inform the fans immediately of any transfer business they are in the process of conducting. If we sign Billy Sharp next week and you find out that negotiations had been ongoing for a week are you going to slate Bates for not keeping you informed?

    • TSS

      No, I don’t think the club should tell us this immediately – although it’d be nice since we’re the ones that keep it going. They had to answer after his agent revealed the request, but they never had to reveal the date. Revealing the date only served to muddy the waters even more.

  • cossie(LUFC)

    I agree with most comments above. Beckford will leave with my best wishes, I only hope we don’t replace him with someone closer to Enoch or Vokes in scoring ability! How about letting him go for £1M to Newcastle with a 25PCT sell on clause and either Ranger or Carroll on loan with us until the end of the season, works for me rather than trying to squeeze £3M, after all any money received will follow the Delph money and ‘disapear’

    • swcoach

      I think we have to accept Beckford wanted to leave in the summer, but Leeds were stubborn, put him on the list, but no one wanted him. If he doesn’t want to play, thank him for all the goals – especially Sundays, and let him go.

      Its league one after all, and surely someone will want to come and play for us who can score a few goals. I don’t think this will derail our bid for promotion in anyway what so ever.

  • Ramblinjohn

    I agree with a lot of what you have to say but I think Leeds’s hand has been forced by Beckford’s agent – publishing the date surely is a not unreasonable attempt to stir the sh%t. I bear Beckford no ill will – he has done great things for the club – but if he wants to go then he must, of course, never play for us again and his leaving must maximise the benefit for the club only. A lot of intelligent comments from NUFC fans above too. I think Beckford may live to regret his decision but the only thing that matters is LUFC going up. MOT

  • Paul Smith

    I think that with or without beckford leeds are going up the way we are playing. however i think beckford is a done deal but wether newcastle will benifit from buying beckford i do not no… I mean that we have all seen the curling effots from corner of the box and the running of the shoulder of the last defender but he cannot hold the ball, win it in the air and his first touch is awful… the only way he can score is if its put on a plate. so if newcastle are willing to adapt the way they play to suit beckford good look…. I think gradel could do his role equally as good but would like to see sharpe or barnard…

  • Paul S.Wales

    Gradel take over Beckford’s role? You’re having a laugh. He’s a supersub, if he was that good he’d be at Leceister playing in the CCC. Billy Sharp we need, though Knadol and Grella should get a look in now.

  • Harry
  • Henry V

    I wish him every success too!
    We would have liked him to stay until the end of the season but it was not to be.
    He is 26+ and needs to be earning big money now.
    I don’t know how he will do in a higher division though.
    The reason no one came in for him is because of his first touch, which is usually poor.
    He cannot hold the ball up and his passing is poor.
    Yes he scores his goal,s but the defenders are stronger and faster in the Championship and the Premiership.
    Good luck to him though, and I hope it is all he hopes it will be at his new club.
    Simon Grayson will sort it out!!
    I am sure he has been sorting out a replacement (in his head) for many months.
    That is the sort of man he is!!!!

    Henry.

    I think Beccio will perform better in the higher leagues because he can hold and layoff the ball

  • Colin

    I think Becchio is a Heskey type player, holding the ball up for others to score. I don’t think he can be a goal machine.

    If Becks does go, the how about a loan for an out of favour striker – Mr. David Healy perhaps??

    BREAKING NEWS: Grayson confirmd he will play Beckford in starting 11 at Elland Road against Wycombe – see leedsunited.com

  • derbyshirewhite

    I don’t want to lower the tone of this discussion, but is there something about players who have worn the white shirt which causes Newcastle managers and chairmen to come out in a hot flush? For Hughton to say that he won’t pay silly money in the transfer market whilst he’s trying to spend over £1.5 million on a 3rd division 26 year old who will shortly be out of contract is doublespeak worthy of a politician.

  • Kelly_Holbeck

    At the end of the day, the only person who will win in all of this is Beckfords agent. If Beckford go’s for free he doesnt gain his 40%, Beckford doesnt get his money and Ken Bates (love him or hate him) still has a football club to resurrect from the ashes.
    I am throwing my full support behind Grayson and my fellow fans.
    Leeds United for ever.

  • Harry

    Graysons words in today’s press conference – first line says it all:-

    “I think it is highly unlikely that Jermaine will sign a new contract with us regardless of what we can offer him.
    “We have to cut our cloth accordingly and know he can go on a Bosman in the summer. And he’ll be able to get a decent amount of money if he goes in the summer, wages we properly can’t compete with that.

    Obviously other people have decided that him trying to leave this football club would be in the best interests of the player and maybe the person himself
    Simon Grayson
    “What we can give him is success, games and goals and a place where he can enjoy his football. But obviously other people have decided that him trying to leave this football club would be in the best interests of the player and maybe the person himself.
    “I think it could have been handled differently. Agents do pay a big part in determining players’ futures and sometimes players are too easily influenced by their agents and advisors

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  • Stephen

    Beckford can go. I think it stinks that halfway through a campaign he should throw his hand in. Why not wait until the end of the season and contribute towards the promotion and leave with dignity. He’d be out of contract and get his pay day. He owes Leeds. He forgets that 4 years ago he was on £14k a year fitting windscreens.

    I have to say that I think it’s very strange that thereseems to be as much hatred for Bates as there is for Ridsdale. If Bates hadn’t turned up, there wouldn’t be a Leeds United to follow. Lorimer backs him, Clarke backs him, Eddie Gray backs him, Simon Grayson is happy with him. We are now financially stable. There’s never been a better feeling around the club in recent years, thanks to SG. He appointed Grayson when 99% of Leeds fans were saying, “who?” C’mon… drop the Chelsea thing… it’s getting boring…

  • IMHO the club made the date of the transfer request known to show that they had intended to keep the matter private, which is how it should have been, especially if they didn’t intend selling him on the cheap. It was no big suprise as it’s not the first time he has handed in a transfer request. He comes across as not the sharpest tool in the shed and the agent is clearly running the show. We’ll miss the goals but not the attitude…