In demand!

Rumours are circulating that Billy Davies is set to offer Leeds United £1,000,000 to acquire the services of Argentine striker, Luciano Becchio.

Speculation surrounding the future of the Argentinian has been rife with the strikers contract at Elland Road set to expire in the summer, and a new deal yet to be agreed. However, the 26-year old did move to quash rumours of an exit a couple of weeks back saying that he wanted to see dreams of playing for Leeds United in the Premier League realised.

Despite the strikers statement, the rumours have barely relented with many pointing to competition for places as a possible reason for his exit. The Whites are top-heavy in the striking department having added Billy Paynter and Ross McCormack to the squad in the summer. The club also confirmed a new deal with South African striker Davide Somma just last month.

With 9 goals so far this season, Becchio is currently Leeds United’s top goalscorer. The 0-0 draw away to Reading last week marked Becchio’s 100th league appearance for the Whites, in which time, he’s managed 38 goals for the club after joining from Merida in 2008.

  • Matt BB

    I’m not so worried, Mccormack falls more into the bracket of attacking midfielder / striker, Paynter hasnt had a full pre season so must be more of an option for later on in the season, and Somma is not a sure fire starter each week, effectively leaving Becchio in pole position.

    I also think unless he states he wants to leave hes one of larry’s `favourites’ so unlikely to accept any offers.

  • Gryff

    As critical as I have been of some of Becchio’s weaknesses he’s worth more than £1mil even with only 6 months left on his contract. He clearly would enjoy staying at a club that loves him, and I just hope the club hurry up and complete the contract before too long.

  • Dje

    I’d say £1m for Becchio with six months left on his contract is a reasonable offer. I wouldn’t want to sell him, but if he isn’t going to sign a new contract – regardless of him suggesting he wants to (o much?) – then some money is better than nowt.

    My only worry is that £1m won’t be spent wisely by Grayson as I still think his recruitment drive has been ‘mixed’ at best. Talk in the papers the other day was us paying £750,000 for McCartney. Sure, he’s done well for us since he came: a Premiership-based player who seems to have found his level in the Championship, but I thought Parker was on his way back? I thought White was one for the future? Erm, let’s not mention Bessone…

  • foreverwhite

    Don’t see it myself. Only 6 months does not equate to a £1mill bid since he can go for nothing at the end of the season. I suspect the agent may be stirring because this rumour started in the Daily Mail. ‘Nough said.

  • paulg

    Davies and Forest seemed to be close to falling out in the Summer when Davies was muttering about the club not backing him during the January window last year ….. maybe that Becchio is just a pawn in the game that’s going on there.

    Much as I like him, £1m seems a pretty high bid to me for a division where not a lot of money has been spent this year, particularly if you can pick him up for nothing in 6 months time …..

  • Mike

    If it comes down to him going for nothing there will be a bunch of clubs after him, that will be why (if it is true) Davies is prepared to pay.

  • Colin

    If someone offers us £1m for Becchio with 6 months left then bite their hands off.

    There’s only a few players that we shouldn’t consider money for and they are Snodgrass, Schmeichel and Howson. The rest all have their price.

    When looking at transfers – then try to reverse it – that’s a good way of looking at it. eg. if Becchio was at Forest, would you be happy as a Leeds fan to pay £1m for him with 6 months left. Answer = No. And for that reason I would take the offer.

    We’ve got 4 strikers fighting for one place in a 4-5-1 (Somma, McCormack, Becchio and Paynter) and we’ve got 1 on loan (Grella). We’re not lacking in depth in attack.

    And remember it’s all about the wages – that destroys clubs. If you sign Becchio on a 3 year contract at £15,000 a week, that’s £2.3m you need to find. If you get an additional £1m, then that’s a good £3m – £2m not leaving the bank and £1m going in.

    Who makes the business decisions? Bates. What do you think Bates would do when he’s presented with those figures?

    And I don’t want to open a can of worms here (Colin grabs can-opener), but I have sympathy with @TSS views that Becchio isn’t particularly all that. He’s very good, but he’s not great.

    • Matt BB

      @colin but surely you need 4 out and out strikers in a modern squad, and arguably we may well end up reverting to 4-4-2 or 4-3-3- or need the flexibility to do so.

      For me selling becchio would be very unwise indeed and if the rumour is true – which it probably isnt, then we should avoid selling him like the plague.

      Didnt see too many offers flooding in for paynter did we when his time was up at Swindon.. still not convinced there, so if anyone was to go it would be him for me.

  • Dje

    @colin

    Good points there, but I’d like to see more of McCormack, Paynter and another look at Somma before we accept an offer for Becchio. If none of those can replace Becchio’s impact in the LUFC XI, ‘like for like’, then we’d have to go out and bring in a replacement for Becchio which would counter your financial prudence argument. In which case you’d be looking at paying out £1m and good wages and we might well end up with another McSheffrey (or Bessone?!).

  • White to the core

    Personally i would like Becchio to stay as i think theres plenty more to come from him with the right players around him. Sadly Bates obviously knows our squad is too large in some areas and the tight fisted old git will cash in on him. If Bates had any intention of keeping him then he would have sorted his contract out by now.Becchio isnt asking for grand sums of cash, so its fair to assume hes seen as surplus to requirements. The info leaked to the press in the summer regarding Becchio are looking to be spot on! More fool Bates and Grayson .

  • Gryff

    @djedjedje in terms of White & Parker, Parker has been out so much now I would be very worried about relying on him when he’s back from injury. As far as White goes, I like him but Grayson’s said he sees him as more of a winger than a wing-back.

    @colin I agree if he’s going then £1mil is better than £0. But I still think Becchio is important to our team, and thus i’d gamble by not selling him in case he signs a contract between now and the summer. Sure McCormack had a good scoring record for a while, but he has the potential to get problems in his private life and hasn’t proven that he fits into our current team (and it happens, just look at Forlan at Man Utd!) and Paynter had a decent record at Swindon following uninspiring years at Southend, Hull & Port Vale.

    My own decision would be that the potential of not having a viable (that is, one that’s scoring goals as opposed to one than might do in teh future) striker in the team next year is worth gambling £1mil on, especially after how expensive lads like Hopper & Sharp turned out to be last summer…

  • Mike

    If our other strikers are that good why is Bechio starting every game.
    he is the only proven striker we have, Somma is next, the others are unknown quantities, what the fuck is larry doing letting rumours like that run around? Becchio must feel really secure… ….another example of shit man management.

    • Craig

      @mikelufc

      To answer your first question Mike – both Paynter and McCormack are returning from injury and Becchio is therefore the known quantity who is the most fit and is also currently delivering. If Luci were to get injured I’m sure Grayson would have no qualms about putting Paynter in his place, probably using Somma much as he’s doing at present.

  • paulg

    @ mikelufc

    How the fuck (to use your word) can Grayson prevent these rumours from circulating????? Grayson may raise doubts in some people’s minds, but surely this is one thing he can’t be blamed for …….

    • Matt BB

      absolutely, last time i checked he was manager of leeds united, not head of the ministry of information..

      @mikelufc we all know you arent a grayson fan but lets keep it real!

  • Tim Campbell

    Does anyone know wot’s happened nunez? He seems to have fallen off the edge of the world lately – although I see he’s still in the squad.

  • Mark R

    2022 World Cup in Qatar ?? Qatar ?? Let me look at an Atlas as there must be some mistake …..Qatar in the baking hot Middle East ?? The World Cup …. The Football World Cup is in Qatar in 2022 ???

    Say it ain’t so TSS ?

    Do they even have 11 players ?

    If a country with no football history, with a population of 1.6million can be awarded the World Cup, then I’m backing Yorshire’s bid for 2026. Six million or so population, a rich football history & culture, infrastructure in place.

    Yorkshire for 2026….BACK THE BID

    MOT

    • Colin

      @Mark R
      Russia and Qatar – it’s a joke.

  • Craig

    @Mark R @colin

    It is all about money pure and simple. FIFA have detected new potential revenue streams within countries that know how to deliver undetectable bungs. Although the Panorama programme was frustratingly presented by an understandably embittered journalist it exposed a side of FIFA that made me sick to the core. Whether or not any or all the specific allegations are ever proven, the very attitude of the FIFA organisation demonstrates such a high degree of arrogance and contempt for probity that it surely cannot go unchallenged. Their lack of adequate response is inexcusable and national governments and footballing bodies should now form a coalition to demand a radical overhaul of the whole football institution.