Sky Sports are today claiming Leeds have made an enquiry regarding Coventry City captain, Sammy Clingan.

The former Nottingham Forest and Norwich City defensive midfielder has made 58 appearances for Coventry since joining them in 2009, scoring 5 times. He has also been capped 25 times at international level for Northern Ireland.

It seems Coventry are in a similar position to that of Leeds with Max Gradel. The midfielder has just one year left on his contract leaving some Sky Blues fans to fear the board may bypass the manager completely and take the cash while it’s on the table.

Can Leeds Finnish the deal? 

The rumour linking Alexei Eremenko to Leeds that we reported earlier this week has now been picked up by Sky Sports who are also claiming he could try-out for the Whites against Motherwell this weekend.

Securing the signature of the Finnish international might not be so straightforward however with reports emerging that Cardiff City are also monitoring the attacking midfielder.

Prodigal Son homecoming in doubt

The Yorkshire Evening Post is quoting a source close to Alan Smith who claims the Whites are no closer to securing a deal with their former player than they were at the beginning of the transfer window.

The stumbling block appears to be nothing more than greed with Alan Smith refusing to take a cut in wages. Whilst Newcastle United have offered to pay half his wages for the remainder of his contract, Leeds United are understandably refusing to pay the other £30,000 per week to secure his services.

A poll of more than 1,000 fans on The Scratching Shed revealed that 84% would welcome the return of the Rothwell-born midfielder.

  • Gryff

    You can breath easy on Smith now, eh? :)

    Clingan’s a good midfielder, but I wouldn’t expect any more loyalty from him than Smith tbh. Would be a good signing despite that IMO

  • http://www.16bitrevival.co.uk Joey

    Would welcome the signing of Clingan, hes the sort of player you need in this division and hes tough enough for the prem as well :)

    rather have him than smith tbh.

    also Wouldnt do any harm to have another attacking option in the Finnish lad!

  • Craig

    Haven’t we got enough attacking midfielders?

  • Matt BB

    Should the rumours surrounding Smith’s unpreparedness to accept a cut to a paltry £55K a week be true then thats pretty disgusting, I think Smith is now a good Championship player (would do a job for us) to sit in the resves at Newcastle and pick up his salary shows a lack of professional pride, it’s also not long term thinking, but i suppose its the modern way with footballers. Personally I’d have loved to see him come back to Leeds but clearly he doesnt love us as much as we love him, and those sorts of relationships are never worth persisting with..

    Emenerenekro seems to be a good replacement for Johnson, even down to the designer stubble, notwithstanding that he perhaps actually has something to back up his reputation having played as a full international (unlike bradders) My view – sign him up!

    Clingan?…. Not so sure about that, name me one goo NI player who we’ve got via Snodins `inside track’ on their international staff… last season it was McCartney.. No thanks.

  • Dje

    Am I the only one who has never heard of Klingon? Not saying that is necessarily a bad thing or means he isn’t up to scratch, just wondered whether I am missing something big here. Is he any better than Michael Doyle?

    As cash would be involved for Klingon, then I am tempted to say that Montgomery has to be an either /or option here.

    ps. Is it just me or does he look like the lovechild of Michael Schumacher and the Mekon form Dan Dare comics? Yes, I’m that old, yes I’m that shallow.

    • http://www.thescratchingshed.com/ TSS

      I’m struggling to remember him and looking at the clubs he’s played for, I must have been at ten games he’s featured in.

  • http://www.bt.com Bez

    Clingan is a good player, no doubt about it – he’s small, good feet, good passer and a great free-kick taker..

  • Dje

    Personally I would fight to keep my pay level the same, keep to the highest level of employment and believe that I was good enough to do it, rather than do the same job for less money, at a lower level and only ever looking to being shown the door and early retirement. Can’t blame Smith there.

    Bates & Grayson were always looking for a 20% discount on his wages by playing the nostalgia card which is taking the piss really. For all the talk of wanting to see the white of the eyes of any player who wants to sign for us, to see if they are fully with us or not, it is hard to think of a less caring initial attitude from our club at the moment. It is so blatantly about getting a player at bargain wages and mouthing off in public the second this is questioned. We do get what we deserve, and in Clingan I imagine he was the fifth or sixth name on the list for a new midfielder at the start of the June.

    • http://www.thescratchingshed.com/ TSS

      To be fair, he’s already a multi-millionaire and if he really did love Leeds so much he’d play for free – I know I and every other Whitss fan reading this would.

      Half his current salary already exceeds that of an average Championship player. If Leeds are offering another £15k on top of that as reported and he’s still refusing I fail to see what more people can expect? Smith is a very average player who is well passed his peak – £15k a week is ridiculous in my opinion.

      • Dje

        I agree, Smith, isn’t worth £15,000 a week plus the Newcastle top-up, but that is hardly an incentive to drop a division, as I made out before, we are the least welcoming of clubs at the moment.

        I think he’s spotted that they have a very average manager in Pardew. They have just cleared out the successful midfield that has done so well for them in the last two years and filled it with loads of expensive European talent who are likely not to gel, and likely to get homesick as they realise how odd Geordieland is. Who are you going to court to steady the ship from your ranks? Someone like Smith. That gives him half a season to showcase that he can cut it in the Premiership. At the end of the season he would be just over 31 and of interest to any lower Premiership team or team coming up (may’be even us!). A two or three year contract with that club on say £20,000 a year would see him through to almost retirement.

        If that fails and the European lads do well at Newcastle then come Christmas he’ll be out on loan to a struggling and desperate relegation-place Premiership team, or Championship team, again, it could be us. In which case the gamble didn’t pay off, but he is still showcasing his ability for the next contract come the 2012-13 season.

        Alternatively, he drops a division and joins a Championship team on probably a two year contract. Even if he helps that team get promoted they will look at him and say, OK you helped Newcastle out of the Championship but struggled in the Premiership, you have just helped us out of the Championship but you are likely to struggle in the Premiership again, so we want rid. That is a Catch-22 situation for a player in his 30s. Essentially, if he agrees to move to a Championship now then he is giving in on his desire as a professional football player to play at the top of their ability in the top league and their career is as good as over.

        And we expect him to do that for considerably less wages and half the fans suggesting that he isn’t up to the Championship level anyway and isn’t worth more than £15,000 a week.
        It isn’t Smith’s fault his agent got a great contract out of Allardyce years ago. But as we are still suggesting that we can’t/won’t match his wages with our part-contribution and he is in the higher league at the moment. He has all the cards and quite frankly, sad as it is to say – ability aside – he is too good for our current ambition and transfer policy at Leeds United.

        • Craig

          What world do these footballers live in? I’d be willing to taker £20,000 a YEAR until retirement right at this minute! Shameful.

  • Tyler 75

    Dje – I think you’re wide of the mark; I have it on reliable authority that he is actually the lovechild of Vladimir Putin and Golum.

    • Dje

      I think our two frankensteins will have to fight it for who is the true Clingan. It should be one hell of a Death Match. Haye, Klitschko, stand aside…!

  • Arnie

    He looks like Collina, the Italian ref, albeit with hair!
    Again, underwhelmed by this transfer link. Possibility of a cheap deal though if he’s in the last year of his contract, so would fit Bates’ criteria. By the way, Matt BB, how do you spell that Russian guy’s name again?! lol

  • Tyler 75

    Any thoughts on whether all this stuff about Max wanting to go to Lille is little more than paper talk ? Personally I don’t think you can blame him for wanting to play in the Champions League if he’s offered the chance – I would just hope that if we do decide to sell that we actually negotiate a decent fee i.e. ‘silly money’ to quote Bates.

    • Dje

      I agree that the Champions League and Lille – an up and coming club on that circuit – would surely be too tempting for him. I’m not sure how much they would pay, but with one year left o the contract, it won’t be funny money. £1.5-2.5m I’d say, as they know they have the higher league and Champions League lure to unsettle Gradel at the club if we refuse.

      The biggest disappointment, yet again, is our apparent short-termism. We seem to give up the second a player mutters anything about more wages for a new contract. We have come up one league and expect to go up another – why wouldn’t our players want more money.

      To me, with his talent and young age, putting Gradel on a three year contract (at least) on good is a no brainer. The money made on any future transfer if we fail to get promoted would more than cover the increase in the wages we give to him in a new contract. And if we go up then we can afford to keep him and cover those wages.

      We are far too conservative and reactionary and not pro-active enough as a club. It is deeply worrying. We should be identifying our Premiership class players – Snodgrass, Gradel, Howson and I’d argue Becchio, Somma and maybe Nunez – and get them on wages that will sign them each up for at least three seasons.

      If we have to pay a lower Premiership wage to keep Premiership-class players then so be it. Without it, without them, we are very ordinary and will have to spend a fortune in two to three years time to finally bring in the Premiership class of key players to get us promoted.

      There is no apparent vision and we have a Chairman who believes in a a mythical Dellboy bargain promotion, and a manager who believes in in-fill loanees as the stop gap until we are back in the Premiership.

      I’m sorry, but our manager really should have the passion to be building up a stable squad of that talent here and now for the future and not believe that that comes with promotion and a war chest for new transfers.

      We are, IMHO, too naïve.

  • stelufc123

    http://www.coventrytelegraph.net/coventry-city-fc/football-rumours-gossip/2011/07/15/gossip-leeds-united-make-move-for-sammy-clingan-92746-29059011/??searchscope=92746 well im on this site and the coventry fans do not seem happy at all and some are even saying they will rip there season ticket up if they sell him to us, so he must be a good player eh? MOT

  • http://www.thescratchingshed.com/2011/07/latest-leeds-united-transfer-rumours/ Stephen

    Latest transfer news.

    Leeds United are advertising for a Marketing Executive. My wife has said through my agent that she would “loan” me out for a season with no compensation fee required. Here is a deal that Uncle Ken could not refuse. Who cares if I have no clue about Marketing it is a free deal.

  • Gerry C

    So far Leeds have paid nothing for any player and are at least £1M better off by selling Schmeichel. We were supposed to have nabbed a better keeper than Schmeichel but to date have secured Blackpool reservs’ keeper and a 35 year old mifielder who has hardly kicked a ball since Christmas. Just five or six of Grayson’s 23 captures have involved transfer fees – so why do people think that Leeds will make an investment in Alan Smith going by their previous track record ? It’s better for Bates/Grayson partnership to let the fans feed off the “he wouldn’t come for a drop in wages” story. During Bates (from my memory)tenure we have not paid more than cira £600K for one player…David Healy.
    Brighton have paid £2.5m for one player and Southampton have allegedly had £3M turned down for Maynard of Bristol City. that’s two sided who were in League One last year.Ken bates wants promotion if possible on the cheap and Simon Grayson to date hasn’t spoken up re lack of funds to buy players. We start this season so far without : Schmeichel, Higgs, Naylor, Kilkenny, Johnson, Lichaj and San Watt. Now I don’t advoate of goibg back to the bad old days of paying big money for players. However, Bates either has no faith in Grayson’s buys or he’s 1. trying to get promotion on the cheap or 2. investing money in the East Stan – Museums, corporate boxes. As possibly the biggest one club city in the world what prospective buyer would in any shape or form deal with Ken Bates ? Leeds need three or four more decent players and that won’t happen with free transfers. For the record I would go for Alan Smith whom I’m sure a deal could be brokered with despite the jargon spinning around in the press, and put Gradel on a decent long term contract.

  • leeds_lad

    Overall where are the “improvements” promised to the squad ? At BEST we are recruiting “like for like” replacements, but of course, these do happen to be all “on the cheap”. Pi$$ off Bates !

  • Mikey

    Why do people want Alan Smith.
    This boy peaked at 22!He is injury prone. too slow. dosnt score goals dosnt create goals and wants 20000 PLUS A WEEK
    Bonkers!
    Never ever go back. It dosnt work!
    Sadly however if we do not sort out the squad now and make some quality signings then we are all going back next May…..
    T0 COLCHESTER AND YOEVIL!!!

    • peter

      I agree, Smith would be a stupid move and for £30,000 a week we could hopefully sign a hell of a lot better.

  • trueyorxman

    Even Huddersfield Town have spent £1M this week on some kid from Bolton!! Why is Stockdale not at Elland Road yet either? Frustrating times (as always!)

  • http://www.thescratchingshed.com/ TSS

    Just heard Eremenko’s trial is in doubt as the connecting flight he had to take to Glasgow has been cancelled.

    • Dje

      What, Bates refused to reimburse him for the flight – even if he signs for us! Lol

  • trueyorxman

    Lille eyeing up Max. Championship or Champions League…tough call for the lad, not!

    • http://www.thescratchingshed.com/ TSS

      Personally think that’s a nonsense rumour. Can’t even figure out where it came from – seems to have originated on Twitter.

  • Paddy1992

    Smith. Talentless waste of space runs around slot and kicks people. Good player? Why? Oh yeah cos of the above mentioned reasons and like with howson ‘he’s a Leeds lad’ this doesn’t make him a good player. Personally I’d rather have someone like clingan cos he’s young hungry and talented 3 things smith isn’t. All u morons who want him back need to move on we’ve just signed 1 30 plus midfield clogger why we need another one?!

  • CJ

    Its a nothing story.
    Bates will only sign players who are available for next to nothing. If Sammy Clinghan is such a great player then there’ll plenty of other interested clubs. Basically, he isn’t going to join Leeds.
    We’ll have to make do with all the shit that nobody else wants.

  • Dg

    I am starting to lose faith in Bates and Grayson big time. We are Leeds United, not some 2 bob crap outfit! We are linked this week with a non league goalie and a 27 year old midfielder from Huddersfield! What is goingon here? Where are all the PROFITS going Mr Bates.

    With the way the the rest of our rivals are strengthening I see us in the bottom half of the division and with a few injuries, fighting relegation.

    If we go down again, thats it for me, no more premiership season ticket prices for L1 football again, they can stuff it.

  • lufcgjb

    apparently we’re gonna sign Clingan for 200k

  • Mike

    Smith is a god

    He is Leeds fan

    A Leeds legend for me

    He moved on after he tried everything he could to keep us up.

    A player that could see us into the premiership.

    He is tough and clever if fit our new talisman

    • michael horspool

      smith was no good, please read comments made on smith roumour gains momentum again. the stats dont lie. he was no chapman, Clarke, Viduka, Yeboha or hasslebaink. lets face it he was hardly a frank stranili, or derick lilly (who remembers them?) but played in good team. well over 100 caps 38 goals poor return. as leeds forwards go in my time as fan (1989) he is one of the poorer forwards both on stats and skill, look it up.

      • Dje

        I did look it up, the stats – not skill (you can’t look that up). Thanks for the invite too, as I used to think Smith was a terrible striker – stats speaking – but now I see he was so-so and considerably better than most strikers we have had in the last decade. Who knows, could do a job for us up front after all too!

        Smith, for Leeds, Played: 228 / Goals: 56.

        That is a ratio of one goal for every four games. Not great by Beckford, Becchio or Viduka standards, true – but since when was the best the average benchmark?

        That goal ratio puts him on par with Michael Bridges (82/21); Harry Kewell (242/63); Robbie Blake (77/19); Richard Cresswell (38/9); and David Healy (121/31). And not far behind Rod Wallace (256/66). And better than Brian Deane (201/45), and our own Robert Snodgrass (125/22).

        It also puts him ahead of the legions of shit strikers we’ve had until the last few seasons of Beckford, and Becchio: Michael Ricletts (25/0); Geoff Horsfield (14/2); Tresor Kandol (68/14); Ian Moore (59/2); Tor Andre Flo (23/4); Lee Trundle (10/1); Enoch Showunmi (15/2); Liam Dickinson (8/0); Mike Grella (30/1); Gary McSheffrey (10/1).

        Finally, and to say it all: Billy Paynter (22/1) and Ross McCormack (21/2).

        ____

        Of course, it is all immaterial what his goal ratio would be as he’d be coming as a defensive midfielder, you know in the David Batty role. Batty scored 4 in 382 appearances ~ Hmm, gives Smith to aim at.

        • http://www.thescratchingshed.com/ TSS

          Can’t really include Snoddy and Ke**ll since they’re both wingers, and you also have to consider the fact he had exceptional service for those goals, has only gone downhill since leaving Leeds and most importantly of all – those stats show a VERY average player.

          Also, a lot of the names mentioned weren’t really first team and a lot of appearances came from the bench – unlike Smith.

          The fact remains, he isn’t the same player he once was. He was average and overhyped for being local, now he’s much worse than that and would cost us a fortune. Not worth it at all. The funds are better spent on players for the future rather than fans nostalgic cravings.

          • Dje

            My argument was with statistics and how they can betray you without sue-diligence.

            Yeah, Snoddy is more of a winger, but when we signed him we played him more of an off striker role. Kewell was always a lazy c*nt on the wing, but people remember him as prolific where as he wasn’t especially, just like Bridges who was – injury conceded – a one season wonder, just like Kandol.

            I sort of agree that Smith got better service than we provided our strikers a few seasons back but considering how many chances and goals we scored last season to have Paynter who was not always a sub score only one is utterly embarrassing. I am absolutely sure that Smith, had he played 22 times for us last season up front would have scored more.

            Sadly owing to the time when he played for us and lack of web coverage in those days, I can’t find but would love to know how many assists he got for us up front, especially for Viduka.

            I have no real compassion for strikers who can’t get in the starting XI of a malfunctioning and underperforming Leeds team in the Championship a few seasons back and League One, and whose striker goal ratio is now poorer than otherwise. Not being on the pitch from the start says it all.

            As it was, I can’t recall anyone back around 2000 calling for us to start with another striker beyond Smith and Viduka. Robbie Keane came and went, Fowler came in for God knows what, but Viduka and smith, if fit, started. Even when Smith’s goals tailed off and we went into implosion, you still had more faith in him upfront than some of that overpaid tat that Venables and Reid brought in with no improvement.

            But no, a move for Smith as a striker would not be a clever move. Although as someone said the other day, if we had him as a defensive midfielder and ran into injuries (Somma? Becchio?), with Grayson’s idea of a decent striker on loan – McSheffrey! Dickinson! Dickov! Trundle! – I think I’d play Smith as it’s better the 1 in 4 devil you know.

          • charles

            have to agree with myself and TSS, some of the players he rates with are wingers and the others are creative forwards, blake, Healy and sir rod wallace would have other aspects of game and bring others into play smith done nothing apart from score, run around a bit, get caught offside, get booked, kiss badge and cause hassle nothing as a footballer, you cant put an out and out goal scorer in same catagory as a forward, smith is a typical number 9, chapman, beckford clark etc…the others are number 8’s or 10’s and have other aspects. Smith was very average at best and only played defensive mid as people paid money and had to jusitfy it. look at players who ferguson signed in that position roy keane etc..he signed smith to piss leeds off then had to play him to justify money so put him as defensive mid, lets face it smith was no chapman, viduka or batty. he was plain crap at best. let him rot

  • John8oy

    I’m not one to defend Smith, infact I’m not that bothered if he doesn’t come back to ER (we need to move on), but why should he take a pay cut? Money rules EVERYTHING nowadays. Would you take a pay cut in your job? He’ll collect nearly £1m to fight for his place at Newcastle – good luck to him, that’s not greed, that’s common sense and loyalty. He signed a 4 year deal, if you want to honour it then Hats off. IF Barcodes want rid, they’ll have to cough up big time so he’s not out of pocket – Thats what contract are there for.

  • michael horspool

    please will people get over smith (read my comments and fact on other smith post) he was never any good, fact and now he is just worse. be good to see leeds sign a good defensive mid as that is needed, along with good centre half, good keeper (loved kasper but he was bit small and made handeling errors) also think we may need forward as worried beccio will be out more than in. hate Ken bates ok building a meausum and stand but wont spend more then three shillings a week on wages and £50 plus %25 discount at Top shop for transfer fee. Hope we keep gradel dont mind if snodgrass leaves. love sondgrass great player but slow and really think nunuz will step up to the plate. so if we can get 5mill for snod take it and spend it where the team needs money at the back. if we sell gradel or contiune to sign no one of only pony that no one else wants (including smith) who is up for finding Ken bates and kicking him square in the nuts with me? if enough of us do it he will spend money. how many kicks in the balls would it take for you to spend money on leeds if you were rich?

    keep gradel, sign players, kick bates campaign. join us on facebook

    MARCHING ON TOGETHER

    p.s fed up with this he is a leeds fan rubbish. so am i a die hard leeds fan but dont mean i should be in the starting 11

  • Get a grip

    Come off it! He was on 45k a week during his peak whilst at Leeds the first time round, and we were in the premiership then. The lads gone greedy, he’s only being asked to drop 5k to return to a club he supposedly loves when he knows full well we cant risk finacial stability to give in to his demands. If the lad doesnt get that then he doesnt understand what Leeds have gone through the last couple of years. Lets move on he has an over inflated opinion of his abilities and if his unwillingness to join us again is true, then I dont want his attitude in the dressing room. KLets look at liely targets and lets stop obsessing over past players those days are gone, we need to focus on our future and bringing in younger players we can progress with! MOT

  • Tare

    I can now confirm:

    Alexei eremenko Jr. is going to sign Leeds, news article from Finnish tabloid “Iltalehti” (Evening News):

    “Alexei Eremenko Jr. was due to fly to Scotland on Friday to seal the agreement with the traditional English Football Club Leeds United.

    Finncomm transition flight from Kokkola to Helsinki, however, ruined the plans.

    – I jumped the machine in Kokkola, after which the pilot announced a machine to be broken, and all had to leave the plane, Eremenko cursed in Facebook update on Friday.

    Losa (nickname) was to continue from Helsinki to Edinburgh towards Motherwell and the local football club Fir Park Stadium. If everything would have gone right, Losa would had already played in white shirt.

    – He faced a “force majeure”. Such can happen sometimes, Alexei Eremenko Senior (father) laughed to Iltalehti.

    – They ought to send a private jet to get him, Senior joked.

    “Great Society”

    Former big club in Leeds is seeking an increase back to the top and the FA Premier League. Father-of Eremenko Losa wants to play with peacocks in the ranks.

    – Leeds is a big club, so why does not he want to?

    Transfer to Leeds may wait for the time being, however – thanks to the breakdown in machinery.

    – Next week, probably something happens, Eremenko Senior explains.

    Leeds may also offer a Finnish couple of match-scale trial period before the actual agreement, in which case the problems of flight crashed Motherwell matches would have been an important place for the display.

    VILLE POWER VEIKKO for-veikko.valta @ iltalehti.fi

    Tare from Finland

    • http://www.thescratchingshed.com/ TSS

      Bit lost in translation in parts, but think I get the jist of it. Thanks for the update, keep us posted of any news.

  • Tyler75

    Bit worried that his nickname is ‘losa’ !

    Local media down here (Sussex) has been saying that Gus is interested in him for Brighton in a playmaker role – must be a good player !

  • Tare

    Sorry for the translation but it was done in a hurry just to keep you guys informed.

    Few words of Losa anyway; Good points: excellent both feet’s, can play in either flanks or in the middle. Passing range from 10 to 40 yards with pinpoint accuracy. Age 28. Can be used as a withdrawn striker in 4-3-1-1 formation. Technical skills are very good. Free kicks and shoots outside penalty area are stuff for the Youtube.

    Best Finnish player at the moment (MHO).

    Bad points: Sometimes drifts in the game. Temper sometimes flares if provoked.

    So all in all very good player if he remembers let the football do the talking:).

    Tare

  • number1inyorkshire

    Don’t want smith never did so lets hope it sleeping in bed now that one .can’t blame him on the money why would anyone want to go and loose 45000 a week .if they pay him up he would come but we don’t need him .

    now clingan is a leeds type player he would be fantastic at leeds with brown he is a better player than brown and killa with howson bombing forward it could work .reading the Coventry chat they are pissed about this rumor lets hope for once it turns out more than that

  • chareose

    Agree with DJE, if Smith refuses Leeds i dont think it will be so much about money but the fact that Leeds under Bates is a fucking joke and also that he feels he can get himself back in Newcastles team…. The fact he got death threats from some moron leeds fans probably wont attract him much either

  • chareose

    On Klingon….he really does look like a character off Star Trek, perhaps if this move doesnt work out for him he can look to land a role in the upcoming Star Trek Voyager Motion Pictures……..

  • Irving08

    It puzzles me why SG doesn’t show any sign of public resistance to Ken’s strategy, even if only feigned.

  • orangina

    I think Dje and a few others have got it spot on re Smith – the fact we haggled with Lonergan who isn’t even the No.2 at Preston over wages speaks volumes. I think perhaps a loan option will become apparent in January with Smith but by then will we be interested? I got to know the guy well at Leeds and he was nothing like the Judas money grabber stereotype at all. I agree he is way past his best, but I think he’s been hung out to dry by Fergiescum and Fat Sam who have treated him like a round peg in a square hole. The guy needs a fresh start and its all well and good saying he should take a huge wage cut but the death threats and the way Ken Bates is running the club will have impacted on Alan’s decision making. I can’t help thinking its all a massive PR stunt to mask the fact Bates would willingly sell quite a few stars in return for a fat load of cash. I hope I’m wrong. The only reason Bates would haggle successfully with Smithy is to appease the fans and make a killing on shirt sales – whether people burned or wore them wouldn’t matter, he’d still be happy with the dough. Call me cynical but thats the way it looks. Too easy to pick on Smith but I can understand why he’d think he’s leaving one circus at nutty Newcastle and joining a hot potato at his old club – there’s just no pleasing people, he’s just got to decide what’s the lesser of two evils.
    Stay and collect splinters for a season or go where a vociferous few don’t want you and be a PR cash cow mmm decisions. Personally I hope all this is blown out of the water and Alan comes back but I’m not holding my breath!

  • orangina

    sorry it should’ve read “isn’t even the no.1″ LOL Bacardi brain…… anyway MOT guys, lets hope Gradel’s injury isn’t a smokescreen for hobbling off to Wet Spam or Foolham lol ;) got to laugh

  • Rodge

    I think we need more defenders not just midfielders that was our weakness last season

  • Mike

    Uncle ken has a plan, he is a business man after all and understands his return from being in the premiership is far greater.
    He knows that signing no one will not make us stronger.the plan is we. Already have 3 players on long term loans done.
    Loan or permanent I don’t care there is no real love for a club anymore.it a job and who pays you the most is where you work.
    Who among us wouldn’t leave our job for 5k more a week month or year ? Smith would be a asset to the club trust ken he will not let us down.

  • GMcG

    Don’t think Smith is the answer right now but nor do I think the slagging off is really warranted.

    In his first two or three seasons he was actually a very good finisher and if O’Dreary had bothered to replace Hasselbaink with a similar striker instead of waiting a year because we weren’t going to pay over the odds (tell that to Seth Johnson haha), I believe we may well have won the title in 1999/2000.

    I seem to remember Van Huge Dick was on strike at Forest at the time and in that Leeds team he would surely have been good for 20+ goals. Instead, Smith – at 18 or 19 years old – was effectively played as a target man with predicatably poor results.

    Don’t think there would have been many complaining about his partnership with Viduka the following year – particularly in the Champions League – but by then our gobshite manager and budding autobiographer was already intoxicated with striker-itis and later decided Smith was better at right-sided midfield – bizarre.

    Truth is that Smith was a very good prospect who never quite fulfilled his potential through being poorly managed and subsequently injury prone.

  • http://zenmb.blogspot.com Dr Zen

    He was a pretty ordinary striker in a good team and has been a committed but limited midfielder. If he’d never played for Leeds, I think we’d all be going wtf at the idea of signing him.

    Eremenko could well be a decent signing. Clingan is probably no better than a midtable Championship player but that’s what we are in the market for and thinking otherwise is only going to bring heartbreak.

  • cagey

    BBC WEb Site States this …
    1946: FOOTBALL: St Etienne have agreed a deal to buy winger Max Gradel, subject to a medical, from Leeds United.

  • Kevin

    FFS! Y wud Leeds sell gradel? hes class and they sold he for 7m when they can get 12m of west ham