The 2010 Leeds United leadership debate TSS April 27, 2010 Leeds United 56 Comments With most Leeds United fans more interested in who wears the Whites armband than who will be occupying No. 10 Downing Street for the next four-five years, TSS has decided to express the concerns of some posters and instil a little democracy into our own leadership battle. Much like the current leader of our great country, the current leader of Leeds United – namely, Richard Naylor – has come under much scrutiny in recent months. Much like Gordon Brown, Richard Naylor is an unelected leader of our never-democratic team, who has been criticised from all quarters for his lack of noticeable leadership skills. In Naylor’s defence however, he does come from the place he represents, unlike a certain Mr. Brown who comes from the cold foothills of Scotland. This is akin to Leeds United being captained by a Manchester born exile – touchy subject to say the least. The candidates Jonny Howson is a Leeds-born, Leeds-bred lad playing for his favourite team and quite literally ‘living the dream’. He knows what it means to play for Leeds United and is often seen as the fans representative on the pitch. Leeds United fans are well-known for the love of their home-town heroes, but it’s a potentially disastrous situation as shown by previous hero, Alan Smith. Jonny is currently the teams vice-captain and brings with him a fair amount of experience in the senior position, having led the Whites earlier in the season whilst Richard Naylor was out injured. Left-back, right-back, right-midfielder, central midfielder and no doubt centre forward given half a chance, Andrew Hughes will be a surprise nomination to many as he’s often a player targeted for some heavy criticism. However, Hughes’ versatile roles within the side show his eagerness to play for the team regardless of position. Moreover, whilst his ability at left-back is easy to scrutinise, his commitment and effort can’t be. One of those ‘wears his heart on his sleeve’ kinda guys Leeds United fans usually love. Patrick Kisnorbo would probably be the bookies favourite if anyone other than ourselves were taking this poll seriously. His introduction into the Leeds United side this season instantly solved the defensive frailties we’d been prone to throughout previous years. Unfortunately, Paddy was injured recently and Leeds have suffered ever since. Kis has continually shown his commitment to Leeds despite his injury by travelling with the squad to all their games since. He’s also a big favourite amongst the fans for his fearless, never-say-die attitude that was epitomized by the bandage he wore for most games this season. It covered an untreated head injury from earlier in the season that Paddy had played through the pain barrier of. Still, he is a foreigner… Come over here, steal all our jobs, fix Leeds United’s defensive problems… Robert Snodgrass is another one of our beloved foreigners that gives everything for the team. Even when things aren’t going well for the Scot and his crossing ends up in the roof of the East Stand, Snoddy’s head never drops and the youngster keeps fighting for the cause. In interviews, he’s told how much he loves playing for the club and wants to be part of a legacy which includes other Scottish greats like Eddie Gray and Billy Bremner. Unquestionably a fans favourite, but does he possess the ability to lead such a great team at such a young age? The final nomination is Luciano Becchio. An outside shot, no doubt, but his effort is something every Leeds United fan appreciates even when things aren’t going quite right for the Argentinian. Most of his time in Leeds has been spent living in the shadow of prolific goal-scorer Jermaine Beckford, but whilst Jermaine’s goals have undoubtedly put us in the position we’re in, Luci’s work-rate has been a big contributing factor – something that hasn’t gone unnoticed amongst the Leeds United fans and led to Becchio become a bit of a cult hero. A much beloved work horse, but does he have leadership potential? I’ve also added an option to vote for ‘other’ so those that feel someone has been over-looked can select this option and add their comments below. The current captain has also been included in the poll for those of you that still believe Richard Naylor is the right man for the job. Thanks go to Mike R for suggesting the idea as well as the people who debated the captaincy issue on a previous post. Do you think GFH are better equipped to take Leeds United forward than Ken Bates? Yes No View Results Loading ... Matt BB I vote for Jonny Howson, he played at a much higher level than currently when he wore the armband and you know how much he loves the club. Some players wilt under pressure, but i think the more pressure he is under the more you get out of howson, who at his best is the best central midfielder in League One. TheReaper08 I am disappointed such underdogs as Patrick Kisnorbo have made the short list and more surprised that people are actually voting for him, I mean what has he done in comparison to the man legend that is Andy Hughes. Andrew Hughes, modern day footballing legend. Totally side before self. Would play in goal, up front or just bring the water on if it was of benefit to Leeds United. After all that is what this is about isn’t it those to words that make the hair on your neck stand up LEEDS UNITED. Often mocked this is the man that made Man Utd’s attacking force look positively Blue Square standard, do you need a bigger better reason than that. You do, well try this, rarely in this modern footballing world will you ever see a more hairy proffessional footballer than Mr Hughes. Forget the rest Hughes is the best ! timm And my word what a lot of hair he’s got on that neck! I think Paddy’s more of a number 2 to the natural leadership of ‘Andy’? The fact that he’s loved by so many of us in spite of the fact he’s from Manchester speaks volumes too. For a harder working & more determined Leeds Utd…Vote Hughes! Joe Black We are not just talking hard work and determinatiom here, but leadership. I vote for Patrick Kisnorbo who shows all 3 qualities in abundance. Hotshotlorimer 110%er, gives his all and then some. That’s what we need and it is what we get from some players, perhaps none more so than Hughes. On the other hand, while some players are rightly criticised for not giving it all, others have been defended or promoted simply because they do give everything when that on its own is unfortunately not enough. Yes Hughes is versatile and accepted he’s not currently playing in his favoured position. But he’s still playing badly and imo over a long period he hasn’t shown enough to indicate that there’s much possibility of improvement. In whichever position he plays, favoured or not, there’s generally someone better. Giving everything is imperative but you also have to be good enough, and Hughsey isn’t. Paddy gives his all too, is the best central defender on the books and marshalls the whole of the defence and more. He gets my vote, no question. Johnny has not yet matured as well as might have hoped yet and too erratic to be permanent captain but still lot of time for him. TheReaper08 TSS, a rather feeble attempt to back yoiur candidate Mad Max Gradel, you have bundled him in under ‘other’. No faith in your own campaign abilities ? Vote Hughes, you know it makes sense. TSS Not at all my friend. The results of this will be analysed, scrutinised and re-configured until Max Gradel is the winner. That’s how democracy works – or has it changed recently? TheReaper08 Hhmmm, then I will feal compelled to launch a military coup against you installing Andrew Hughes as the rightful winner, now where did you say that cave was you were hiding in….. TheReaper08 That’s ‘feel’ of course…. TSS I had to flee my cave after getting wind of a planned swoop from the Bates Mafia. I’ve now upgraded to a tree-house, just on the outskirts of Beeston. Much faster broadband connection and I can keep an eye out for the Real Radio Renegade. Pingback: uberVU - social comments() Pingback: Tweets that mention The 2010 Leeds United leadership debate -- Topsy.com() Pattaya Rag You have to go for someone who, subject to being fit, will always be on the team sheet. I don’t think Naylor, Hughes and possibly Howson fall in to that group. Short of us signing Bobby Collins I vote for Kis. Mark R He’s Tall , He’s from Slovenia On the ball, eats his activia He’s a Giant, there’s no beanstalk Vote for LUBO, and Slovenian straight talk. VOTE LUBO FOR A TALLER LEEDS ! timm Im having a good look at Lubo Mark & i think i may be able to find a few ‘discrepencies’ with his expenses?!! Pete Lubo…like Robert Molenaar, only not as good a defender. les did you sat lubo like robert molenaar ,only not as good as a defender Gaz Nicholson Like it, but it’s Slovakia he’s from! Mark R He’s Tall , NOT from Slovenia Plays football, and uses Nivea He’s a Giant, no Count Dracula Vote for LUBO, He’s from Slovakia ! VOTE LUBO FOR A TALLER LEEDS ! Lee Coward Paddy! He can wear the armband round his head for luck… superhoops What about Andy Robinson? superhoops or maybe Tom Elliot? Matt BB In Slovenia he’s more popular than Subo Burt you’d be a mug to vote for our Lubo He’s from the Balkans – to use the vernacular And he deals as well with crosses – as good old count dracula. TheReaper08 That’s an A+ for trying I think. Mark R Nice one Matt. A kick in the Balkans to my LUBO campaign! Just seen your Count Dracula after I replied to Gaz a little higher in the post. Mark Matt BB Yes good to have a bit of a laugh as a Leeds fan, it doesnt happen much.. Chris from Wakey This is a pointless discussion. If we go up then half the team aren’t good enough. If we stay in the third division then Uncle Ken will decide half the team are too expensive. The new skipper will be “the last man standing” after the mid-summer sales. The future is two weeks away! TheReaper08 It’s supposed to be a bit of fun chap, something to break the cycle of who owns the club, who should be shot for there perfomance at the weekend etc. etc. Did some of the posts above not give that away ? Pete Oooh, can I vote for the referee to be shot for his performance? He was awful! Mark R THERE’S ONLY ONE … GIANT LUBO AND HE’S NOOOO FATBOY SUMO ! SIX FOOT FOUR, FIRST TEAM NO MORE.. LOUNGING IN A LUBO WONDERLAND ! Reaper ..think I’ve peaked too early ? TheReaper08 Nope, I think it’s going well for you and quite frankly I have been in stitches reading the posts. Hughes is on 5 votes now, just need to find another 92 voters and he will take the outright lead from that Paddy fella. Henryv I would like the captain to be a midfield player. My vote would be for Wes Hoolihan. Henry. paul on his day hughes is as good as anyone, that day just dosent come round very often! TheReaper08 Nope, that day only comes once a week…..Saturday ! He’ll play here, he’ll play there, he’ll play every flipping where Andy Hughes, Andy Hughes… Mark R Nice use of ‘Flipping’ .. has much wider appeal. TheReaper08 Need to be careful not to alienate the younger or more sensitive voters. Craig Bl***y H*** I’ve been out for the afternoon and the site has gone mad! You all getting too much sun? The answer is flippin’ obvious – whoever offers the biggest bung gets the prize. Craig I’ve just read that the reserves won their league again. Was any one of our regulars at the match? I ask because I’m wondering who the two trialists were – one seems to have been in central defence and I’m wondering if Naylor’s days might be numbered. Pete Why not Neil Kilkenny? Doubt he’d do that bad a job… Lewis g well my vote woould be broken up as everyone has had good and bad spells this season, so id split my vote between kilkenny,gradel,ankergren & higgs (altho caspers blundered a few he has produced quite a few! out of this world saves since he’s been here, and higgs for his cosistancy at statr of season, kisnorbo and also grella and white who i both believe would have shone if had the opportunity… grella would have had jsut as big an impact as somma did if he had gone to a league 2 stuggling side,,, both should be given an opportunity at leeds or at least (if in championship) loaned to league 1 sides to build them up.. Craig I think you misread the poll Lewis – it is for the position of Captain. les spell checker Knick well atleast he’s not sitting on the fence! hehe leeds lad Whilst I agree that Kisnorbo is the best player we have available, I feel that we need to go out and buy a natural leader ( possibly a well respected older player ) who will add some class and experience to the team. Hopefully such a player will be available at the right cost, so Pappa Smurf wont have to shed too many tears, and would also provide a great role model for the younger players…… In the same way the “legend” of Bobby Collins apparently nurtured the Revie babes. les hi i touched captaincy yesterday and as i said then our best form this season was when jonny howson was captain thats a fact i did however vote for paddy in the poll ,but if we get promoted i do think naylor will be too old to start every week in the championship so will hughes ,and with paddy not coming back til october the obvious choice has to be howson some one has said grayson might rue the day he brought naylor back into the side i personaly think there are other things to rue over some of his loan signings ,getting rid of frazer,prutts and 1 or 2 others .the good news is it looks like if we get promoted bates might have to list the owners in championship next season if the guardian reports are to be believed Colin I second the Howson motion from the Right Honourable Les. TSS – you likened him to Smithy – that’s no bad thing in my book – he’s captained Newcastle and they’ve done alright. I think he’s got a bit of spirit – There’s a picture of him somewhere facing up to Wes Brown. Wes would have ruined a perfectly good pair of pants had it not been for Beckford holding Jonny back. He also is the calm head, keeping other players away from going too far in squabbles. He’s seems intelligent so the manager can get him to relay his thoughts on the pitch. He’s done it before and because he’s Leeds bred he’s less likely to get stick from the boo boys when form isn’t going too well. I think you need a player who’s been at the club more than one season before they get the armband – so you can see if they’re consistently good (though Naylor went straight in). And I think someone like Kis should just be allowed to play his game rather than having to worry about captaincy as well. I don’t think your captain has to be your best player, but maybe just Mr. Steady and Howson is that. I think Howson probably will be captain next season. I don’t think Naylor will be first team in CCC and although a lot of players will come in, it’d be a big gamble to make one of them captain, especially with SG’s record on signings! ash Paddy timm Well it’s all opinions i suppose? I think Howson’s largely anonymous on the pitch & he’s part of the worst midfield we’ve had for years.I don’t care if he was born in the club car park, as i said before, he’s got a year to show he’s got what it takes or he should be gone. I can’t agree with you on Alan ‘scummer’ Smith either, He’s a dirty player with limited ability & Newcastles leader is Kevin Nolan. Smith has contributed very little to their season,only playing in two thirds of their games as Hughton has chosen to go with 2 wingers at his expense. His 30 league appearances have yielded 9 yellow cards, 1 red card & no goals. If it’s just about showing a bit of spirit then we should all love Hughesy, he’ll play anywhere for the team & he’s always the last one off the pitch. VOTE HUGHES!! You know it makes sense! TheReaper08 Oh timm a great post that I have to say I totally agree with. Alan Smith just isn’t a very good footballer full stop. You know how you tell a poor footballer, in there prime they start to migrate backwards towards the goalkeeper. Watch out for Alan Smith appearing at right back sometime soon. I fear our campaign for Andy Hughes may have hit some rocky ground, we have amassed a total of 6 votes (to be fair that’s slightly better than my first prediction) ranking him just above Bechhio and just behind ‘other’. timm I fear the worst Reaper! Who’s this Paddy bloke anyway? Duncan Just hold on there bald eagle. Eddie Gray moved backwards as he got older, yet I know without asking that you will agree that he was one of our finest ever players. Ah luvs him! TheReaper08 I said in there prime Duncan, how old was Smith when Old red nose decided he was more of a midfileder than a striker ? His goal scoring record is 0.14 goals v appearances, to put that into context Showumni’s record is 0.15 and the much maligned Jermaine Beckford is 0.54. Some top class players can and do move back towards goal to prolong there careers but it is usually at the very end of and they have the exceptional quality to get away with it. Benjamin Bunny I voted Paddy but after reading through all this my mind has changed to Howson. We were having the best games when he was our captain, that is a FACT. I think him or Pady would either do a good job. Kilkenny could be an outsider maybe. timm Come on Benjamin.Theres still time to change your mind again! Just get the Man Utd dvd out & watch Hughesys performance whilst listening to a Churchill speech or the Dambusters theme. The man’s a rock! Come on everybody, give Hughes the armband! TheReaper08 There are some other coincidences at that time, such as Marques playing alongside Kis and the ever present ANDREW HUGHES at left back. Duncan Jermaine Beckford – the fans love him and it will be an added inducement for him to sign a new contract. Win win!