Media speculation over Max Gradel’s future continues with fresh reports linking the winger with a move away from Leeds.

Today he has been linked with Fulham while reports are mixed as to whether West Ham are still in the hunt for the Ivorian after having a £2.5 million bid rejected. Max has said to the Daily Mail, “are Fulham interested in buying me? Yes. I know West Ham are interested in buying me, too.’

When questioned on the potential move to the Hammers, Gradel is quoted as saying “if I keep playing well, I’ll end up somewhere better.”

Although Simon Grayson continues to state his determination to keep Gradel, with Leeds yet to tie up a contract extension for the winger, comments like these certainly don’t ease fans’ fears that Mad Max may be heading for the Elland Road exit at some point this season.

  • Seems to me something is holding this up more than just the club not offering a contract. I can't help feeling that Max is saying all the right words but he (or his agent) is holding out for more money than we are prepared to offer. It all comes down to a 3+ way tug of war with all parties well and truly digging their heals in.

  • Chareose

    Mixed feelings about this…….. I hate it when players tout themselves about, you just want to say "fuck off then" but lets be realistic, Leeds wouldnt replace him with the same or better quality if replace him at all…………….. We potentially have the best midfeild in the division with him, snods, clayton, howson and nunez and if we can sign a decent striker and a defender to fill the squad out we could have a real chance at promotion but not if Gradel goes……….This is poor management by the club, Our best player of last season should have been signed up to a new 3 year contract at all costs. It shows real lack of vision and ambition that the club arnt willing to commit to that.

    • I disagree that it should be "at all costs". If I agree with one things Bates does it's not bow down to daft wage demands. I do hope we are offering something reasonable though.

      • Chareose

        Unfortunately in the age of the premadonna footballer you have to compete on wages or you wont sign decent players, that is unless your happy in the lower leagues……..Also according to Gradel, Leeds havent even offered him a contract

  • VikarOfNorway

    Wouldn't worry about Max leaving. If he does we will get hansomly paid, and it would give Nunez a proper chance to shine. We would have to bring in a replacement in Nunez position, but that should be easily achievable if Gradel wants to go to "a better place". Should already be let go with that attitude if the quote is accurate….

    • Matthew

      Personally I think if Gradel goes, Keogh is the replacement.

      • dalesteel

        how could keogh be the replacement? Did you mean nunez?

        • Matthew

          Keogh can play as a forward, or a Winger, and has a good work rate to make the 4 – 4 – 2 formation work, I would partner him with Becchio upfront

          Something like

          Snodgrass, Clayton, Howson, Nunez
          Keogh
          Becchio

          Becchio playing deep, Keogh playing near enough beside, working off one another.

          Assuming we play 4 – 4 – 2 lol

          • Matthew

            Or Keogh could just play Winger if Grayson goes back to old habits of going to 4 – 5 – 1 again and just take Gradels spot.

          • birstallwhites

            if keogh stays and signs a perminent deal.then.billy will.definatley be sold am pretty sure that keogh is the replacement for billy or even better we maybe able to sort out a swap deal for monty or quinn for billy. then.a DECENT defender then BOOM here we come premier league

  • Chareose

    Gradel and Nunez arnt the same type of player……… we wouldnt replace him and I doubt whether Bates would release much if any of the transfer fee that Gradel would command to buying someonelse in the little time we have left.

    I also suspect that Ken WANTS to sell gradel to finance his private property developments…………..

    • Timothy Wilson

      Try MP3s, they don't skip

    • ross mccaramac

      if max waits until jan we wont get anything for him, so any clubs interested in him wont offer much, if there is a wage structure in place it looks like another season at least in the championship. with players like lees and white being given a chance i think that's more sensible than spending silly amounts on wages. eventually if we want a side challenging for promotion we will have to. otherwise exit clayton, snodgrass, etc.

  • James Eyre

    blah blah blah TSS you are so boring, all we hear from you is hatred for Ken Bates and innacurate reporting on stories like this about Gradel. All the quotes said were that basically he just wants to keep playing well, and that he knew their had been interest. The quotes are nothing to worry about according Andrew Haigh on Twitter who has seen the full set of quotes, not just selected ones.

    • number1inyorkshire

      this aint tss if you read its Tim Hodge
      read before you speak is the moral to this story blah blah blah

      • Gaz

        How can “if I keep playing well, I’ll end up somewhere better” be taken out of context? Some fans are kidding themselves if they think he doesn't want to leave.

        • Bowden

          He may well mean "If I keep playing like this, i'll end up somewhere better, by getting Leeds back into the Premiership"… Just a thought.

  • Carl Pearson

    Max is not saying anything positive about our club or the fans that have been fully behind him when it would have been easy to alienate him , we have had a lot of good players at lufc over the years and when they have left or retired we have carried on this is no different if he is going sooner the better , infact any of em that don't 100% want to be at Leeds fk off !

  • number1inyorkshire

    gradel can be replaced looks like he is looking to leave .
    he has to be sold before leaving on a bosman, his words can be interpreted in many ways is he saying that if he plays well he can get promoted with leeds or a premier league team will come in for him which the hammers are not ,
    one thing the hammers fans think he is saying he can get better than them so its not looking like he can get a smooth move to them now ,

    is what he is saying if he has said it pretty much the same as twitter really should he be talking about this when he is a leeds player

  • Matthew

    Hard to say if he will repeat himself this season with the amount of goals scored.

    It's like playing deal or no deal, do we deal at a good price knowing we have 250,000 in the box, or do we wait and only find we have the 1p?

  • Colin

    Max's situation,if speculation about his impending departure to pastures new are correct,is a combination of a few things.The Peacocks are capping his wages at a sensible level and won't budge and not set a presidence by giving into blackmail and saying to other team members no one is bigger than the club.Max on the other hand thinks he is too good for the club and demands a higher pay dividend and his agent is touting him in a mercenary way around other clubs to get the highest wage structure and agent's fee possible with no feelings at all towards Leeds Utd.This is the exact same reasons why Kilkenny and Johnson went.
    Football clubs just can't go on paying or afford extortionate wages to players or pay over inflated transfer fees for over inflated ego's.

  • YorkshiremanInDublin

    First time I'd read the second part of the quote about "if I keep playing well, I’ll end up somewhere better”…kinda leaves me thinking right then Max, off ye go! We need players who are delighted and proud to be wearing the Leeds shirt and part of the Leeds team, not ones who are looking for 'something better'. Simple as that really…if the quote is correct of course!

  • dave cyprus

    hi all. just wondered how long before we lose nunez? its so sad to see my beloved club as bottom feaders scratching around the bargain bin for freebies and has beens and scrounging from former opposition clubs in the premiership for their bit part players on loan. i think larry will go before the season ends. not that he isnt commited to leeds, i think he will become frustrated at the lack of comitment from bates and certain players. thanks papa smurf for saving us when you did, but now its time for you to step down and maybe get yourself an allotment to keep you bussy.

  • YorkshiremanInDublin

    Whatever happens let's learn from this, and Beckford and Johnson etc and get Nunez signed to a long term contract quick (plus other key players naturally)…out man from Honduras just bagged another two!!!

    • Matthew

      Nunez has an affinity for Leeds, he wont go anywhere.

      • YorkshiremanInDublin

        I hope you're right and I hope the 'somewhere better' quote is either a fabrication or a poorly-worded second language response (possibly to a leading question). If it is accurate and is the way he feels though, the door's over there Max!

  • Riviera Kid

    I wholeheartedly agree with the premise that if people aren’t committed and have no intention of signing a new contract, then we should cash in. Players are good at being able to say the right things in the press and to the public but behind the scenes there’s probably a different story.
    However, if there are no terms on the table then how can Max refuse a contract? I’d put it right back into his court because it’s embarrassing for Leeds. We appear to be the most incompetent wankers in being able to get our own house in order and unable to seal our better players on long-term contracts. For example, how have we got to this stage without even offering Gradel a contract? If you perform well in your job consistently then you expect to be rewarded. I know I would at work. Also, this year is clearly showing the emergence of Clayton and Nunez; two players we are expecting (and seeing) big things from. Both of these guys are in the final year of their contracts and again, we have done fuck all to tie them down whilst they haven’t had the publicity their performances deserve. We could secure them on cheaper contracts before losing them for nothing.
    Who gets paid at Elland Road for devising the Human Resources’ strategy?! Grayson, Bates and that Gywn tool need to sort their lives out and realise the biggest assets are right in front of them; not in Blackburn’s reserves in the form of Keith Andrews…

    • number1inyorkshire

      that is exactly right bates spouts on in his program notes about all things but he can't get his own house in order and get player contracts sorted
      those in glass house throwing stones get broken windows gradel will walk for free if they don't sort this he is worth 4 million in my opinion

  • YorkshiremanInDublin

    Wigan trio James McCarthy, Ben Watson and Emmerson Boyce have all signed new long-term deals at the DW Stadium (prize asset McCarthy for 5 years). "Having players commit their long-term futures provides the platform we need to build from," said Wigan manager Roberto Martinez. You getting this Ken?

    • Matthew

      Only problem here being most premier league clubs, at least half have debts over £100 million. They obviously believe that upping their salarys to meet their demands is worth adding more debt.

      As much as I want our best players to commit to long term contracts, I don't want to see Leeds in that situation again..

      • YorkshiremanInDublin

        I hear that Matthew, but surely there has to be a better way of doing business than losing all of your prize assets on frees at the end of contracts?

        • Matthew

          We need a higher wage cap, thats for sure, I see no reason why we can't budge to 15 – 20k a week for our better players. If they don't accept, they go.

          Also we need to get the excess off the wage bill, the likes of Bessone, Paynter, Grella and a few other questionable players fan don't want to see in a shirt again. No use paying money on players who will never be of use again.

  • tallaght white

    you cannot believe anything you read in that comic but if max wants to go?.well mighty whites will still be here long after he is gone and a premiership team a decent win tonight roll on the tractor boys

  • There's more to this than meets the eye. Why does this story not just go away ? Answer is not just Gradel's agent, but the club itself.

    We know Bates would sell his grans teeth for a few quid, and Larry did us a great dis-service by bringing this story back into the public domain on the eve of the West Ham game suggesting we would listen to offers.

  • Been

    Unfortunately the petulant nature of Max on the field this year makes him a liability. He is too much of a loose cannon, the carry on against Southampton & the tackle against Middlesborough have not done us any favours. Move him on and make Nunez a regular and give Sam a chance.

    • YorkshiremanInDublin

      He's still young, with time, experience and good advice and guidance he can sort that side of things and still keep the edge to his game, that's no reason to want to sell him on IMO.

  • Brian T

    I would say that its all hype from the media yet again. They are trying to work a deal for him because of his contract but I dont believe Max wants to go anywhere. Leeds, however need to sort it things out or Max will certainly feel that he's just pound signs for Ken Bates

  • James

    We should cash in on him now instead of letting him go for free at the end of the season and i also think if nunez replaced him then it would be ok because he is more than capable of being just as good as gradel, also you dont want a plkayer in the squad who wants to leave.

    [My opinion] dont want people having a go at me

    • Bubionwhite

      How about agreeing with you then James … if he wants to go, let him. First of all the club should put a new contract on the table and if he refuses it, sell him now before the situation is allowed to affect the dressing room but NOT to another Championship club. Over the past two seasons the club has been held to ransom by players wanting to leave, usually at the most disruptive times … Beckford around Christmas and should have been sold, followed by Johnson around Christmas and he too should have been sold, IMO. We still have Ramon Nunez and Lloyd Sam who both appear to be happy and committed.

  • Riviera Kid

    I agree James. My earlier point though is probably the bigger concern on whether we let Gradel go; Nunez as the replacement can leave for nothing at the end if this year because his contract’s up. We don’t sort things out early enough with our own players. If anyone suggests that Nunez won’t sign because he’s after £20k per week then fair do’s! But he’s not. If Grayson can’t see his talent and/or feels he can’t develop him further to put him on a longer-term deal then it says more about Grayson than it does Nunez.

  • Most fans agree, Leeds performance on securing the services of its players is dreadful. Clearly many players want more than their worth and we should not stump up to them, But every time a deal falls through Bates can't keep his mouth shut – He blames agents, players, everybody but himself. One has to think that it makes future negotiations more difficult. How many academy players have we also lost ? Its a bit of a joke. Johnson sits on a bench at Norwich, Kilkennys at who ? oh yes Bristol, Talk is Beckford, Joint top scorer at Everton last season is a target for a couple of Premiership clubs, Earning Everton some much needed funds. Something is definately amiss with Leeds negotiating team. We should be talking about the emergence of Lees, Clayton, Nunez, with Becchio and Somma to return- not who is going next……… Whatever happens we have a team capable of producing exciting football…Get them signed up………

  • We all seem to forget that the club pretty much has their hands tied. All the "we should do this and that" talk doesn't take account of the fact that you can't force a player to sign a contract. When Beckford left for his payday – because that is exactly what happens when an out-of-contract player leaves – I was always fearful that other players would see the same opportunity. I predict that Max is going to do exactly the same as Beckford did. His agent will have been monitoring interest in his client, Max is taking every opportunity to draw attention to himself by making ambiguous statements and in January he'll be in serious conversations with clubs. By that time he'll have lost an interest in playing for Leeds United just as Beckford did.

    • number1inyorkshire

      your right but what we can do is sell him or put him on a longer deal to start with our contracts are way too short in real terms it only means a player on a 3 year deal has 2 years . before he can start to negotiate with either leeds or others

      • But we can't! that's exactly what I'm saying. We can only sell him or put him on a longer deal if Gradel and his agent agree to do so. Gradel was on a 3 year deal when he signed his first contract with us but he seems to be refusing to extend it or sign a new one.

  • sim

    spot on Criag

  • Carl Pearson

    I remember bates gave blackwell a contract quick enough even though it was plain to see he was out of his depth what was all that about? Blackwell always had the look of someone who had just been caught wan€ing , don't know who said that but it was priceless.

    • Bates OFFERED Blackwell a contract and he signed it.

  • Peter

    "if I keep playing well, I’ll end up somewhere better”. Like The Premiership with Leeds United!:)