Chatting with the enemy

Happy New Year everyone, hope you’re not suffering too much.

In the build up to the FA Cup clash on Sunday, The Scratching Shed and The Republik of Mancunia joined up to have a chat about the rivalry, how things are going and the game ahead. Scott from TRoM sent me some questions to answer which you can now see here. I also put my own questions to Scott which will be published here tomorrow.

Transfer rumours begin

Most of the rumours unsurprisingly revolve around Jermaine Beckford today after it was revealed that Leeds United have turned down Newcastle’s initial offer, thought to be in the region of £1.25m.

With his exit looking somewhat inevitable, rumours of who will replace him have began. Clearly, Luciano Becchio won’t bang in 30 a season, nor do I expect Mike Grella, Tresor Kandol et al, to do so either, so a proven goalscorer is essential.

The initial speculation is that Billy Sharp of Sheffield United and Gary Hooper of Scunthorpe United are the likely replacements. I think both players could do a job for Leeds. Both are in the right age group (Sharp 23, Hooper 21) and both are prolific scorers. Sharp is currently on loan at Doncaster Rovers were he has scored 10 in 16 appearences for them, whilst Hooper has managed 31 in 62 appearences for Scunthorpe.

What would they cost? Well, Sheffield United paid £2,000,000 for Sharp in 2007, with a player heading in the opposite direction as well. Sharp is out of favour in Sheffield though and has been our on loan recently, so we should be able to secure his services quite cheaply. Hooper meanwhile could be a little more expensive as he’s Scunthorpe’s key player and signed a three year contract in 2008. I suspect £2-3m would be too much for them to turn down though.

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  • Grumpy Older Man

    Becchio will score 20+ goals a season when he isn’t expected to work for 2 and whoever partners him (maybe Grella maybe someone else) will benefit from the service Beckford wasted as much as he utilised! He also has the potential to continue to be a decent player at Leeds United through the divisions, something I and a lot of judges don’t see Beckford having.

    If we are going to sign a striker I would plump for us stealing Brett Pitman off Bournemouth.

  • Reaper08

    Hang on and don’t sell no matter what. Risk that he walks but that he will have scored enough goals for us to be firmly in the CCC via automatic. If we do sell then the names mentioned are good but there is no guarantee the clubs will sell or that the player will want to join. Are we all naive to think it’s a foregone that we will attract these players ?

    • TSS

      Sharp’s a Sheff United fan so could be hard tempting him to move, but I reckon Hooper would jump at the chance to play for Leeds. Much bigger club and on the way up.

      • Reaper08

        I reckon Andy Robinson said the same when he walked out on Swansea…..

  • James Morris

    I think Leeds could tempt Sharp to come to Leeds especially if he was getting regular football. I don’t think Doncaster could afford him on a permanent deal, so this leaves it open for us. I think we need to be quick though as I am sure some other Championship clubs will be sniffing too. It looks as if Beckford will sadly go in January which is laughable that he will get them up into PL then they will probably sell him anyway. I hope we make a move for Gradel, I am sure 500k should do the trick. Sharp on the other hand would be 1m+.

  • James Morris

    Just been reading up on Sharp and it seems he is on a season long loan at Doncaster so I don’t know if he has a recall in the loan deal. He was initially on the transfer list so it is a possibility.

    • TSS

      I imagine that clubs retain the right to sell, so the loan should be voidable. Most clubs implement a recall clause these days anyway.

    • Lifer

      He is on a season long loan but if a fee/deal is agreed with another club then the loan can be terminated.

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