It’s been a difficult few days for us Leeds United fans coming to terms with the embarrassing 5-0 defeat at home to Blackpool.

The inquest into the cause of that defeat was led by angry fans, and once we’d finished blaming everyone from Lucas The Kop Cat to the Elland Road tea lady, with no one else left to blame, we turned on each other.

A club whose fanbase was once impossible to divide, united by an “us against the world” mentality born of the hatred aimed at us from every possible direction has crumbled into a divided mess of angry name calling and relentless moaning.

The defiant roar of “we’re Leeds United, we don’t give a f**k” is nothing more than a poignant reminder of how much we’ve changed. Of how petty we’ve all become.

When did we start to care that our star winger was a little slower than average? That our striker is a bit short to pose any aerial threat? That our bench is perhaps a little less exotic than that of Leicester City? “We’re Leeds United, we don’t give a f**k” remember?

This is a club built on misfits for Christ sake. By the end of the season there’ll be two statues outside our club. One will be a fiery Scottish player rejected by most clubs as being too small to make it pro, the second will be Don Revie; the laughing stock of many an FA meeting with his threadbare lucky suit, bingo games and Gypsy curses.

But “we’re Leeds United, we don’t give a f**k”. They didn’t laugh when Revie’s team was tearing their set of generic footballers apart, guided by that fiery little redhead they’d all dismissed.

Enjoy yourselves while you can people, because we’ll only come back stronger. We’re like a little Yorkshire terrier ragging away at your trouser leg – you might shake us off, but we’ll only come back more determined and hungrier than ever.

Except, that’s not true any more is it? We’re so busy picking faults in the manager, in the captain, in the players, in each other that any claim to a die-hard, determined spirit should come with an asterisk stating *if we’ve finished sulking in time. 

That’s the crux of the matter you see. We’re a club of great contradictions. Where once we went Marching On Together throughout the ups and downs, we now moan more than Arsenal and handle defeat worse than Manchester United. There’s no togetherness about this fanbase at all.

We expect results, and we expect them every week regardless of opposition and circumstance. The late Sir Bobby Robson understood the football fans psyche better than anyone, and was absolutely spot on when he said; “People want success. It’s like coffee, they want instant.”

I appreciate the irony of a blogger writing this, but the game is so over-analysed these days that fans are finding fault in absolutely everything. Are there any managers left whose fans don’t seem to think they could do a better job?

A manager shouldn’t be judged by the little things we can pick up on with video replays and the benefit of hindsight, nor should the players. They should be judged on results, and not on a game-by-game, or month-by-month basis but over a long enough duration for the unpredictable variance inherent in every sport to level out and give us a true reflection of their performance. I don’t know, let’s say a season for example?

It’s a strange concept I know, but imagine that we saved all the energy we’ve wasted on moaning and belittling our players and manager and channelled it back into our “us against the world” mentality. Imagine that we rediscovered that unity our club was once famous for and our defiant spirit replaced the petty arguments and tiresome moaning.

The next time you’re at Elland Road and you hear “We’ve been through it all together” blast out across the stands, take a look around at your fellow fans, at the 11 men on the pitch, at Simon Grayson prowling the touchline and at the rest of the players and coaching staff stood behind him.

I’ve written this entire article in a collective sense (we, us, we’re) because we seem to have forgotten what united us all in the first place – we all want the same thing. The fans, the players, the coaching staff, the supporters, Lucas The Kop Cat, the tea lady. We are Leeds United.

As for everyone else? Who the hell cares what they think, let them write us off at their peril. “We’re Leeds United, we don’t give a f**k”. And we thrive as underdogs. On and on…

21 Responses

  1. oldschoolbaby

    I would characterise a 5-o home defeat to Blackpool as a humiliation rather than an embarrassment. And it`s difficult to stay composed when your club has nearly disappeared out of existence and the current situation is shrouded in the fog of a Caribbean tax haven.

    That said, you are of course absolutely right MOT

  2. number1inyorkshire

    it is keeping calm and carrying on, that gets fans nowhere .i know what you mean though ,,

    there is a saying “if you can laugh and smile in the face of adversity ,keep a stiff upper lip when all around is chaos and carry the burden with pride ” you are a leeds fan M O T

  3. Arthur Graham

    You are dead right that we should judge Grayson on performances. I dont think us so called knee jerk reactionaries were judging him on just one humiliation on Wednesday. The fact is there are only two teams who have worse defence than us and the are the bottom 2teams. How many goals did we ship last season? Sadly and it is sad but Larry boy has not got what it takes to sort this problem out. Hes had time. Being ‘Leeds will only keep him in a job and popular for a short while longer. If you dont think our defending (Grayson coaches it) has been a problem for the past two seasons and cost us points in games we should have won easy then say! I travel to nearly every match home and away and i am yet to meet a fan that doesnt think we have big problems defensively. I detest Bates but even i cant blame him for the coaching thats Larry!

  4. Matthew

    Although we absolutely won’t get an automatic promotion spot this season(We don’t have the team or the consistancy), I think if people lowered their expectations to perhaps a sneaky playoff spot at the most, we’l have a good time following these games. Basically consider 3rd to 6th our only realistic goal for this season.

    Not expecting a win tommorow, but anything better than a loss will put us in a reasonable position going into the international break, will let the fans and players recover from previous games and ultimately come out stronger.

    I think we all have been fortunate that this league, this season, has been so close. Although games haven’t gone our way, we’re still 3 points off 6th place with a game inhand.

    Basically a win or a draw against Leicester imo will calm the unrest and will ultimately make us stronger as a club.

  5. Henry Whyte

    Grayson I am afraid has been lucky rather than good over the past 2 seasons. It is no coincidence that Leeds form dives from January. He refuses or is unable to manage a squad. He burns out our team by playing the same 11 using the same tactics every game. He only changes when he is forced to. I fear he spends too much time with his new girl in the broom cupboard rather than on the training field. Can’t imagine dedicated managers like, dare I say Ferguson or Redknapp having the time to wander. It must be very easy to prepare a team to play against us, because we predictably play the same team and same tactics. There never appears to be any thought in considering how we should be playing the opposition and changing the team based on that. On Wednesday we were 3-0 down for over 10 minutes against 10 men and he was still discussing with his 2 coaches what to do. Don’t they already have at least some sort of plan to deal with this. ? I see other managers making a change before the player sent off has even left the pitch!! We have to get Grayson out with his coaches and the only person in front of them should be Bates!!

  6. Colin

    If Leeds get soundly beaten by Leicester (I can see it happening) then I will not be calm and it could be the start of a right carry on.

    There is a winter of discontent bubbling under the surface of a lot of Leeds fans.

    We should be winning our games up to the New Year – nothing tough there. But if that doesn’t happen, then get ready, Bates & Grayson are going to get it in the neck.

    Everyone’s getting sick of the setup at Leeds – something just isn’t right.

  7. number1inyorkshire

    The problem i find for Larry is that if the percentage of people calling for his head on here are representative of fans on the whole he will struggle ..

    There are more and more on here being swayed to the Larry out campaign alright if we win 6-0 tomorrow it might change if it is reactionary .

    • Matthew

      Questionable tactics aside, Grayson isn’t responsible for our current situation, he couldn’t of known that Rachubka would make so many mistakes, and having no real replacement just made things worse.

      Thing is, I’m not seeing much of a Grayson out campaign from fans, if anything the usual well known people online are behind Grayson from what I can see on forums, and from most people I see offline.

  8. Jackie Charlton

    Then again, if SG gets the boot, which vaguely decent manager would want to come to Leeds, given that they would be bound by the iron fist of Kenny Bates?

  9. Mark Anthony

    An article about fans persistent moaning generates further moaning. Youre right TSS our fanbase is pathetic.

    • Matthew

      No Mark, the only aspect of our fanbase that is pathetic are those that intentionally injure opposition fans, or hurl bricks or bottles at the coaches or fans of other teams.

      Yes its common for other teams too to have such trouble makers, but when I think of pathetic in regards to the Leeds fanbase I think of the scum that cause harm to others for no real reason.

  10. Marty from Leicester

    Whats happened to your great club. To see such a great club and its fans so crushed is desperately sad. Leicester shouldnt have a look in against Leeds United. One online poll on a leeds site has 54% of you expecting to lose Sunday. Has Bates crushed the soul of your club so much that you no longer believe you belong amongst the elite. The players pick up on this lack of belief amongst fans and argueing. Yes Simon may not be the man to get you where you belong and Bates definitely is not thd chairman. But stop fighting and disbelieving. You the fans are Leeds United, you the fans some of the best most loyal in europe! Dont let Bates destroy the soul of your club any more. Come here believing you are the best like you always used to and the players will feed off you. Stick together. Bates the old coffin dodger wont be around much longer and if Simon doesnt do it for you wont be there either. But you the fans will be always and Leeds will believe me be great again.

  11. Larryisbatesbastardson

    Concerted action by the fans to spend no more is the only way to hit bates, that gets rid of larry too as no other Chairman would accept his total incompetence.
    TSS think alikes are just prolonging the agony, are they being paid????

  12. will23

    Agree tss, grayson_out should be judged over time not one game. But apparently our league 1 promotion is classed as a glorious grayson-out achievement akin to winng the Premiership. That promotion winning season was an embarrassment to our club in its manner.

    So yes judge grayson- out….it’s one conclusion…time to go…life is too short for journeymen managers to hang around too long.

    Taxi 4 grayson.

    • paulg

      Our promotion winning season was an embarrassment????? What effing planet are you on?????????

      Now, the performance of Huddersfield that season was an embarrassment – they spent a hell of a lot more money than Grayson did. Or what about Southampton? Spent a million on Ricky Lambert, then took Barnard at Christmas, and still had a worse record than we did in our -15 season.

      Get some perspective, fella ……

      • Will23

        Where were you from January to May and what were you watching as we limped pathetically over the line…yes, it was embarrassing. I still feel it with a chill.

        That promotion day was the second luckiest in Grayson-Out’s career; the first was when he got offered the LUFC job itself.

  13. Matthew

    Sorry I can’t keep, I’m too busy smiling like some insane person right now lmao

    Okay joking aside, todays result = Pure bliss.

    Will make a proper comment when the proper post comes up on TSSs blog but come on guys, we won’t get auto promo at the moment but god are the playoffs a serious option now.

  14. ryan delaney

    Fine article, but its a real shame we as ONE Leeds United cannot unite and stop this whinging as it’s not going to make anything better just that bit worse, for christ sake it’s frustrating but for the sake of our beloved club take all that frustration that is building in every one of us onto the terraces home and away, win OR loss and get behind the team, OUR team and give them our 100% support. I honestly believe we will acheive our goal of getting back to were WE belong, but WE all need to stay united together as one. As Leeds United. MOT. Believe!

  15. paulg

    Thanks for this article, TSS – sums up exactly how I feel. I left Elland Road on Tuesday night so pissed off it wasn’t true – not so much with the players, but with a sizeable minority of our so-called fans. All those “fans” who booed Rachubka ….. and particularly the thousands who were streaming out of the ground with 20 minutes to go. Well, f*** the lot of them, as far as I’m concerned. Strangely, I don’t expect us to win every game, and I don’t expect us to play well every game. I’m old enough to have watched quite a lot of the Revie team; they were a far better group of players than the current ones, and funnily enough THEY didn’t win every game – or even play well every game …..


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