Dramatically slashed odds at the bookies have the social networks close to breaking point with Leeds United fans pondering the return of the prodigal son.

Alan Smith speculation has been the headache of the summer for those of us who believe his return is indicative of a Leeds United side stuck in the past, rather than one building for the future. But that’s not the case with everyone, and there is a growing number of Leeds United fans in favour of his return.

Last night, Sky Bet shortened their odds to 1/4 – for those of you unfamiliar with betting odds, 1/4 means that for every £4 you bet, you’ll win £1 (plus your original stake back) if Smith returns to Elland Road by the end of the summer.

Today, those odds have dropped even further with the bookmakers now offering 1/5 on his return making Leeds heavy favourites to capture the Newcastle United player ahead of West Ham at 5/1 and Leicester City at 6/1.

Odds shortening at this rate could indicate that the bookies know something we don’t. It could also mean that there has been some inside knowledge at play and that those in the know have bet heavily on his return forcing the bookies to shorten their odds and minimise loss. Alternatively, it could just be the work of some obsessed Leeds fans betting heavily convinced that Smith will return.

There are credible arguments for and against his return. On the one hand, a partnership with Michael Brown should result in a much tougher central midfield than we saw last season, which in turn could solve the defensive problems we have.

On the other hand, the Smith-Brown partnership is likely to be a slow one, void of creativity and with an appalling disciplinary record. There is also a strong chance these players will have extended time on the sidelines through the injuries and suspensions they will inevitably amass.

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