33,000 As Leeds Match West Ham TimPM March 18, 2012 Leeds United, Match reviews 61 Comments Neil Warnock summed up the mood after Leeds took away a 1-1 draw against West Ham in front of 33,366 yesterday tea-time: “I can’t ask any more, they’ve given me everything. […] We’ve dominated two of the best sides in the league and got one point.” That sums up the mood. We’ve come away without the results we needed for a very improbable playoff-push, but we’ve been easily good enough to match the best teams in the division this year. And you’d have been confident if we had got a play-off spot! There was a plethora of positives to take away from the match. Leeds began the sharper side yet again, winning the first corner of the match within the first five minutes. The pressure told as Rob Green mis-kicked a clearance for a throw, and West Ham’s fullback mis-passed inside the box and almost played Ross McCormack in. Both sides played relatively defensively and had one eye on organizing a defence even as they attacked. What ensued was a scrappy, wholehearted battle with both teams effectively cancelling each other out. And The Whites made mistakes, too. Lonergan mis-hit a clearance at the head of Maynard, a West Ham pass would have been given off-side, but ballooned up off a defender, and would have been collected by a West Ham player wide open had Leeds not been quick out of the traps to get to the ball first – while West Ham were left flat-footed and indecisive. And Maynard used his agility to play a one-two, turning past Tom Lees and out-barged Paul Robinson to be through on goal, only for Lonergan to scuttle out, make himself big, and wrap his body around the ball. That’s all a part of football and to say the defence was poor would be ridiculous. Tom Lees had another solid game, O’Dea did his job well, Connolly defended and linked up going forward very well, and Paul Robinson put another fantastic shift in for Leeds. It was Paul Robinson who really fired the fans up in the second half. The referee, Peter Walton, showed he was far from a home-banker early on when Adam Clayton had his ankles clipped by Kevin Nolan, got straight up and made a decent tackle, and got penalised. Nolan continued to put the boot in every bit as much as you’d expect from Michael Brown, and the referee seemed never to see it as Nolan inexplicably escaped the match without even a card, though he had a bit of banter with Neil Warnock on the touchline… It was to the background of this ostensibly biased referee that Paul Robinson turned Elland Road’s volume up to the highest I remember it since May 2010. Robinson single-handedly built an attack, tackling one to keep the attack going, and then Noble made a long slide for the ball which was matched by Robinson. Robinson tackled well and kept the ball and was promptly yellow carded. You couldn’t believe it. Clearly anything resembling an athlete taking part in a sport is too much for football’s modern bureaucrats! Moments later, after chants of “the refs a w-….”, he showed the ref what he thought with a tough and clean tackle on the edge of Leeds’ box, before a crunching (and clean) tackle to put the ball out of touch. The crowd loved it, while an FL official had a nose-bleed and began hyperventilating. Okay… I made that bit up. But 30,000 Leeds fans suddenly found their voice. The noise didn’t have the desired effect, but unlike in previous matches for many a year, this wasn’t a case of the players freezing. Becchio’s belief couldn’t be questioned when he blazed an ambitious volley over from a way back, and when West Ham redoubled their efforts and found themselves with a corner, the Argentinian looked suspiciously like Diego Maradona in the Leeds box, (though he didn’t get to the ball)… At the other end, Luci! At the other end! And later in the second half Leeds got one of the best chances of the match. Aidy White was great again today. He looked a constant danger when he got the ball, with every run gaining a free-kick, a throw-in, or resulting in a cross. And when he gained another free-kick, Ross McCormack floated the ball in from the left, to the far post. Paul Connolly’s head met it and Rob Green pulled off a fantastic save for West Ham – showing perhaps why he’s a capped England keeper. After 80 minutes, though, it looked like the match would play out for a scrappy 0-0. Carlton Cole had come on after about 60 minutes and looked twice the threat of Maynard. Cole had bullied Tom Lees a little bit in August from set-pieces (with the lad playing right-back that day); that wasn’t the case today, but Cole still carved out a couple of chances for West Ham. Leeds had matched West Ham on every part of the pitch, though, and neither side had found many chances. Although I felt the game had drifted very slightly from us in the second half, it was Leeds who looked to get the winner. Jack Collison came off with ten minutes left. The lad had been very good in West Ham’s midfield, and his replacement – Scum Academy product Ravel Morisson – had an immediate effect. His first action was to give away a throw in from an attacking play. In the resulting run Webber (on for White) won Leeds a corner. The corner was taken by Snodgrass from the left, and was floated into the near post. It was cleared but only as far as Becchio, who passed it back to Snodgrass. The cross found Paul Connolly’s head and Connolly found the crossbar. It was Luciano Becchio who scored a real poacher’s goal as he threw himself into the path of the ball, and nodded it into an empty net. Elland Road erupted. With a victory against West Ham, who could possibly beat us? But there were still five minutes to survive. Deafening chants of Marching On Together cheered the lads on as they got their foot in to break up plays. West Ham had made a few mistakes today, and it was a mistake that ultimately gifted them a goal. George McCartney got in a cross; like most of West Ham’s final passes today it was mis-hit, yet Lonergan was forced to tip it out for a corner. Leeds had struggled with West Ham’s corners last summer, and yet again West Ham found a relatively easy header to equalize. And after a couple of minutes that was it. The fans a little deflated, but a great performance in which our supposedly mid-table team once again equalled, and at times bettered, a top Championship club – this one on Premiership wages. The defence did well as I said. But it was a thorough team effort. At one point Robert Snodgrass slid in to tackle a West Ham forward, and Ross McCormack shepherded it out for a Leeds goal kick. That summed the team up for me. Becchio constantly came back and battled for possession along with Adam Clayton who was like a dynamo in midfield showing not only his good attacking sense but getting stuck in as well. I’ve felt him bypassed sometimes when Leeds haven’t had the time on the ball to play it, but today he showed an excellent all-round performance and looks to be a fantastic centre-mid in the making. Michael Brown did his job well again, and Aidy White was always a threat when he had the ball, with McCormack and Snodgrass as good as ever. And this will be the headache facing Neil Warnock. He wants to improve the team, but is there a single player we could drop? On the Leeds side you could have a few man of the matches. Lonergan pulled off a great save in the first half and did his job well when called upon. Paul Robinson got stuck in and galvanized the fans. Paul Connolly passed well, headed well going forward, and was solid at the back. Aidy White played well when he had it. Adam Clayton looked a proper little midfield general, Snodgrass’ trademark mazey runs were on display again, and McCormack got stuck in well. But my man of the match has to be Luciano Becchio – a lad I’ve said I didn’t think could play in the Premiership last year. With the change of style under Neil Warnock, he’s looking absolutely excellent. He got stuck in in the midfield, he is benefitting from more realistic passing to him, and held the ball up well, and got the goal again. The lad has looked to be giving it his all since returning from injury and my highlight of the match was during a conflagration and more crowd cries of “the ref’s a w-….” when Becchio got properly stuck in and channelled his inner “This is Sparta!” In my personal opinion, that’s probably the end of our playoff hopes with a couple of results not going our way and two points dropped. But it was a great performance in front of a Leeds crowd of old. If only Neil Warnock had been here from the start of the season! Duval77 Another top performance, Paul Robinson my man of match, made for Leeds united! Top 2 teams in league made to look very ordinary at ER last couple of weeks. Got a sneaky feeling we will still make play offs, if not champions next year under colin! MOT morleywhite man of match for me was no doubt adam clayton he battled and won every tackle for 90 mins,he totally bossed Nolan and co in there.I think next season he could be a very important player in the engine room for leeds under warnock next to somebody like Derry.the futures bright.yesterdays team minus connolly o dea brown i think we wil hav enough.im still not 100% convinced whites suited to the advancing role hes playing at the mo i dont think he offers enough at the mo but i think he wil grow in to it,so in my opinion i would bring in a other quality winger to fill that role for the min and use whitey as a weapon from the sub bench. next season as follows for me= gk Lonergan rb ? lb Robinson cb Lees cb ? cm Clayton cm? rw Snodgrass am Mccormack lw ? st Becchio i think these 4 new key players in the summer plus Paul Robinson will be enough to take us back to the promised land,anybody agree?get rid of all the crap ie Bruce Bromby Sam Paynter Forssell etc. Chareose @morleywhite Dont know, its difficult because like Tim said they are all playing well. Certainly on this basis all the first team players deserve to be in the squad for next year. I agree about Connolly, we need a more dynamic full back. However Id try and bring in a max gradel type player and shockingly id look to replace MCcormack, although he was excellent against Middlesborough I feel that he can be man marked out of games sometimes……. I would try and bring in McCarthy for goal, someone like Delph for midfeild, a good centre back and a full back….. Clayton, White, Snodgrass and Becchio are keepers Irving08 @Chareose Connolly ? – I thought he was OK, until nutmegged by a full-back ! He is though good with his head; both the header that Green saved and the one that led to Becchio’s goal showed excellent technique, as well neck muscle. I think our prorities probably lie elsewhere, where we agree. TimPM @Chareose @morleywhite For me, McCormack was marked out of the game attacking and so he came back and helped us defending a lot. Couldn’t ask for more from him. Definitely think we need another Mad Max! Irving08 @TimPM But McCormack’s current job is to find space to create and I am not convinced he can do this; he needs two touches on too many occasions. I suspect he is one of those players who will always come up a bit short when playing against good defenders in a well organised team. We need additional options ‘upfront’ if we’re to flourish next season. morleywhite @Chareose I disagree with replacing Lonners i think hes a excellent keeper at this level. Greg halford for right back from Pompey Clint Hill or Matt Mills for center back to go with young Lees.Derry to sit in there with clayton (if fit enough to play week in week out) Hammill or Kightly for 1 0f flanks.still undecided on Alan smith aswel. Chareose @morleywhite @Chareose Mills had his chance and he turned it down……. Agree Irving……McCormack seems to have something missing, he will end up being a good sub or back up player i suspect….. Robinson looks a find and he responds to the fans which can take him from average to excellent….so definately worth signing On Lonners, yes hes ok but you cant get sentimental over players, Leeds need to go up a few levels to get automatic promotion next year LET ALONE stay up in the prem. McCarthy looks better than Lornagan. Brown is another who it would be easy to get sentimental over….. Also someone was going on about how experience gets you promoted…..maybe but its youth that keeps you there….. to stay in the prem we need good young players who can, learn, adapt and grow into those conditions, your experienced Championship performers will not grow. morleywhite Nothing wrong with Lonners he rarely makes a mistake and is commanding in his area,prob best keeper we hav had since the prem days.personally i disagree i believe we do need experince added in alot of aeas of the team.just look at Warnocks champions QPR they wernt many kids in there it was a squad of older experienced players who had been there and done it and had the know how how to get us out of this division.QPR had the likes of Kenny Derry Hill Hall Helguson Hulse Gorkss Smith,The list goes on. Chareose @morleywhite Yes and QPR are struggling in the prem despite pumping out vast amounts of Cash that Bates would never allow at Leeds United. When Wilko got Leeds promoted and finishing high first season in top flight it was largely on the back of a good crop of young players. We need to keep the likes of White, snodgrass and Lees because they are young enough to adapt to the Premiership. A couple of old heads like Robinson is fine but you need some good youngsters to make the transition if you have not got billions to spend…….. Also all of leeds uniteds most successful periods have come on the back of good youth players morleywhite @Chareose I think we already hav the youth there tho like u say ie Lees White Clayton etc i just think we need that proven experince added to our current crop.it didnt work with Grayson bringin in the likes of Bannon livermore etc.i admit tho it would be nice seein the likes of thompson given a chance to shine. Chareose @morleywhite Thing is mate we wont be able to pick up a Strachen or a McAlister for a reasonable price when we go for promotion…..those days are gone. World class British players cost an absolute packet now and bargains are far and few between SO YOU need a good youth system even more than ever. Leeds are not Man U ….. we dont have a billionair owner like Man city we got Ken bloody bates…….so the good players got to come from somewhere bannon and livermore were loans……… you had YOUNG loan players coming into a club with a negative atmosphere, and it was that way for a couple of years because the fans been getting angrier and angrier at bates……so loan players arnt going to bed down……. Robinsons an old head and hed take it as a compliment that someone with warnocks experience wanted him……..fitted in straight away. Irving08 @Chareose By and large I agree with your line of thought. I hope Warncok does, but fear he may not; still he has surprised me in or two respects to date, so maybe he too will see the sense in trusting in a good amount of youth, and it is there for those who have eyes. Robinson sends out a good vibe and reminded me of Bobby Macdonald (no less!) as a man who knows his job. I would like to see him against a pacier player than he faced yesterday. Irving08 Excellent summary and assessment of an absorbing game. Personally I thought they had a touch more quality and composure in the first two thirds than us withTomkins, before he went off, outstanding; which from our league positions is what you would expect. But they were unimpressive in the last third, where we trumped them; of our front four, I thought McCormack again showed that he needs space – which is what he was denied yesterday – in order to be most effective.The defence, until the last minute, did everything right, when only the lack of a man on the near post denied us victory. It would be McCarthy too, who nutmegged Connolly, in the lead-in to the corner ! We are now a hard team to beat, but I am not sure a pressure game, essentially relying on one player for performing the unusual, will be quite enough to get us where we want to be. Oh for Mad Max ! – but, hey, there’s a lad in Coventry called Nimley just waiting to be snapped up. number1inyorkshire at 2.55 i would have taken a draw same at half time, at 4.50 i was cheering the win at 4.55 i was gutted, at 5pm i was happy we had matched westham al the way . It was a mistake form young tom lees who will learn from it ,i just wish he would do his learning when we are in a game that is beyond us or we are winning by more than a goal with minutes to go . Warnock was gutted too ,his delight at the goal his disappointment at the end were a massive statement from me that he will be staying and that we will be an altogerther better team next season . All in all though we all would have taken that before the game . MOM ===Clyton who was fantastic as was Robinson a gain ,brown was also but i sometimes think his rash tackles could cost us either him or penalty or free kick . A thought for Fabrice Muamba too at this time morleywhite max would be perfect?is there talk of him coming back or something?if not a adam hammill michael kightly or even a jason punchean altho i dont see that 1 happening with his history with Bates.that kind of player is essential next season tho in my eyes to complement Rosco Becchio and Snoddy. Chareose @morleywhite Adam hamill would be nice……….. Shame about Delph,he was just starting to gain fitness as he got injured (should be a leeds player), If I was Warnock id try and poach Hargreaves from Man City in the summer…… has scored for them, worth a punt as if hes half as good as he was a few years could be nice to have a round morleywhite @Chareose would u take Smith back as a holding mid to sit in there with Clayton?cant make my mind up with that 1? Chareose @morleywhite yeah its a hard call…….Id trust warnock to look at him and decide though…. Thing is maybe sentimentality but i always think an Ex leeds player coming back would go up a few gears in a leeds united shirt…….always remember Batty’s return to Leeds…… will never forget him completely owning Roy Keane v Man U at ER….. morleywhite @Chareose Think Smith would put that extra effort in if he returned to repay the fans.realy can see this one happening as hes a Warnock type player and i think Smith would jump at the chance.According to max Gradels wiki page he wants a Leeds return.Dont know if theres any truth in that? Chareose @morleywhite Yes im sure Warnock would consider him if hes available……….. Gradel ?? dont get my hopes up, i thought he was quality – gutted WHEN KEN offloaded him. If we had kept him, wed have the best midfeild in the division……perfect offset to Snodgrass Think any potential Gradel return would be hampered by Ken Bates and the price tag. morleywhite @Chareose Gradel would be perfect for a warnock formation both attacking and defending from the front.max Snoddy and Rosco behind becchio would be awesome Chareose @morleywhite hope we can get somma back to his best again, he looked a real find before his injury…… So who should leeds ditch from the current squad ??? Or better still who would you keep ? In order of importance; Snodgrass Becchio Clayton White Lees Lonnergan Robinson Subs McCormack Somma Connolly Brown Thompson Taylor Cairns Gimpel Sell everyone else Buy Delph Gradel Smith McCarthy A couple defenders…..?? lol Woodgate ?? yeah im dreaming Chareose @morleywhite yes that team would defo win promotion….i should try playing championship manager….. morleywhite @Chareose keep Lonners get a new right back idealy Greg Halford get somebody like Kilgallon to go with Lees.robinson for left back.Keep clayton with either a Derry or maybe a Smith.keep mccormack and snoddy and a Max gradel type player behind Becchio and i think we have cracked it.id also like to see white stay tho.Did Warnock hav Kilgallon at the Blunts? Chareose @morleywhite Surely we have a chance to get woodgate now theres a better atmosphere at ER……even with one leg hes better than any championship defender bya country mile. Him and Radebe were the best centreback pairing on Earth, shame about the injuries……. Dont know much about Halford, Derrys probably too old now morleywhite @Chareose Halfords a 6 foot plus right back whos also decent at going forward plus he can also fill in at center back and right wing.would get him on cheap to with pompey struggling cash wise. TimPM @Chareose @morleywhite I doubt if Smithy came it would be as a planned-for first choice? More of a useful player to make a few appearances, steady the ship, etc.? Anyone seen how he’s doing at Dons? TimPM @Chareose @morleywhite If Woody plays more than 10 matches more in his career I’ll be amazed… He’s sounding like doing a Kisnorbo at the moment – too slow, lost his flow and giving away pennos & being shunted to full-back as a result… number1inyorkshire @Chareose @morleywhite mccormack is by far our best player and by a long way keep him and the rest build round him .. number1inyorkshire @morleywhite @Chareose lorimer .clarke ,martyn .radebe ,mccallister ,strachan , smith ,woodgate gradel .lets have a retro team instead of new players . can we move on please Colin @Chareose @morleywhite ALAN SMITH – Yes, Yes, Yes. Getting Alan Smith on a free transfer is a no brainer. He gave rousing team talks in the Newcastle dressing room, he wants a long term job with a view to coaching. Okay, he’s not what he was, but then again, neither are Michael Brown or Paul Robinson. I’d say get him on board and offer him a long term deal, get him playing and get him involved with the youth team and let him do his coaching badges at Leeds. His agent has said that he wants a long term project. The guy’s a multi millionaire – he doesn’t need/want the money. He wants to play, he wants to learn to coach. He’ll be free to buy and cheap to maintain. He’s just what we need and he was also pivotal to Newcastle’s promotion back to the PL. BTW – I’m biased. I love Alan Smith. I think he’s great. Colin @number1inyorkshire @morleywhite @Chareose number1 – I get your point, but were you unhappy when O’Leary got David Batty back. Come on, admit it, he was still very good the second time round? Colin @number1inyorkshire @Chareose @morleywhite number1 – McCormack is excellent, but I fear his skill is wasted in a direct team which we will see under Warnock. With regret, I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s sold over the summer. He’s not a Warnock type player. If decent money comes in, I bet you Warnock sells him. Irving08 @number1inyorkshire And I thought you were a man of perception Number 1 ! Ask yourself why he ended up here unwanted by Cardiff and previously off-loaded by Sunderland or whoever…he’s the championship’s equaivalent of that flat track bully, who played for Arsenal. Chareose @number1inyorkshire Agree Irving…. I hope Mccormick develops under warnock, hes a good player and skillful but maybe misses the mentality and consistency that takes you from good to top class…. Snodgrass is far better and will make it in the Premiership…. I suspect Clayton and Becchio will aswell number1inyorkshire to be fair it is pretty much as colin said about how your team is set up .In the right set up 4-4-2 mccormack is as good as it gets in this division . 2 others mentioned Becchio and Snodgrass both are fantastic players but both lack 1 thing Genuine pace , Alright snodders can run and quickly but its not easy for him to sustain it and when you are concentrating on running you are not concentrating on anything else ,thats why unfit teams often concede late on , My grandmother can honestly run quicker than Becchio . who is the flat track bully you don.t mention ?? PLease no more talk of Alan Smith ,pretty please number1inyorkshire @Chareose @morleywhite Colin you need counselling LOL you have got Alan Smith syndrome .this is a common ailment of leeds fans and comes under various names another been radebe disorder .It stems from the hero worship of previous players who kissed a shirt or badge . this is not to be confused by the altogether differing disease paynter finger and grella elbow both of which are given to the altogether crap players who you can point an accusing finger at then give the elbow for not being good enough these sort of inflictions are repetitive injuries caused by the huge numbers of dross players signed on loan by our previous manager number1inyorkshire @TimPM @Chareose @morleywhite he went to league 1 from the prem .is there anything else to say on this or any other matter regarding MR Smith . Irving08 @Chareose Agree on priority keeps with one exception: O’Dea has done nothing much wrong since Warnock took over. I would buy him, as I think most championship clubs would. Left-sided central defenders don’t grow on trees. But I am afraid I would not go for any of the ex-Leeds lads, Max excepted. Especially would not go for Smith: can’t tackle properly,no pace and not much imagination: no offence meant. Fab, I fear, is now always going to be an injury risk. The Reading goalie – yes, please. Irving08 @number1inyorkshire But McCormack needed Keogh, just as we did, and still do. I was thinking of the handball man. On Snodds, it sems that Warnock’s fellow managers agree with you, judging by his exclusion from the Division’s best X1. He’s still our best player, though, no ? Tyler75 If you look at the value of a player – it would take £6-£8m to buty Snods – substantially less for Ross. I like Ross, I think he’s a quality player but if NW sticks with 3 behind Becchio I think Somma would be a better bet over Ross when he’s fit as he’sout and out goalscorer with pace. Tyler75 @number1inyorkshire @TimPM @Chareose @morleywhite The ship has sailed for Smith. There was maybe an opportunity in January for him to come in and galvanise a dispirited squad and club – but that moment has passed, time to move on. Chareose @Tyler75 Yeah i was thinking the same thing about O’dea Irving…….hes been excellent recently…… However that said we still have a tendancy to hoof the ball from the back when we are under preassure so perhaps there is a need for a touch of class in there. Theres no reason we shouldnt sign him and another defender in the summer on contracts and have them competing for places TimPM @number1inyorkshire @Chareose @morleywhite That’s a slight false comparison though? Smithy was offered a coach/player role at Newcastle and he turned it down because he doesn’t want to stop playing yet. At Newcastle he was in their squad when they got promotion from the Championship. He was more or less dropped in the end, though. Reading between the lines that was partly because Newcastle are building for the future with a young squad. Where does a 30something fit in with that? So at that point he was clearly a good Championship standard. Then he’s not been able to go anywhere because of the farcical wage he was being paid. He’s ended up at MKD and I have no idea how he’s performed, but unless he’s looking poor I wouldn’t judge him based on the level he’s at on loan atm. TimPM @Irving Agree on Fab Delph. He showed nowt that I remember in his loan that would suggest he’s much better than now ex-Captain Fantastic or even Adam Clayton so long as Clayts keeps trying hard. number1inyorkshire webber or white could do the keogh role for mccormack they have the pace . sorry don.t agree either that he is our best player alright we need to keep him along with others but i maintain the mccormack is our best player technically . if snodders had the pace of gradel or white along with his skill then maybe yes he was unlucky with his free kick saturday but some of his crosses are poor as he tries to get to line everytime and his corners are not the best . i know i am being over critical and neither did i see the championship team my god with 2 months to go of a season its rubbish anyway . clayton and lees are great players a lot of ours have had their time and will rue the day we get back up to prem if they are at leeds because they are not good enough anymore for there . we need to keep playing this season keep the young ones when we cant neither go up nor down play the better kids and plan for next season . Anyways seems macca is now injured which is why we are keeping paynter instead of him going to county .. number1inyorkshire @Tyler75 @TimPM @Chareose @morleywhite thank god we missed that boat … bd This summer will be interesting if we dont go up (who we can keep how much money Warnock will be given) If at the end of next season we dont go up and Warnock has left (contract expired)and we didnt spend much money every Leeds fan will want Bates out So in a way i feel Bates, Warnock and Leeds for next season are inter-twined. Irving08 One big question is this: would Warnock agree to sell Snoddy to a Prem. team if he was given the entire proceeds – say 6 – 8 mill – to put together his team ? And if he would, do the fans still back him ? TimPM Wasn’t Hernandez for Scumchester a £6mil signing? Looking this season Mancienne was (best guesses) £2.2mil, Given £3.3mil, Cabaye £4.4mil. Clearly you can get good players reasonably cheaply, but the amount of players not better than Snoddy going for about £10mil… It’ll be a big decision if he’s confronted with it. Colin Only a madman would sell Robert Snodgrass. And don’t let Bates’ twisted logic get into you. We are Leeds United. We DO NOT need to sell in order to buy. We have the largest turnover in this division. We do not have any debt to repay. We do not have a high wage bill. We are cash rich. For a start, Pugh was bought for £500k out of “Simon’s pot” which means that the £3.75m from Gradel & Howson, hasn’t been touched. So that’s £4m that’s available to Warnock before Ken even has to touch the profits, which we make every year. There’s no need for Ken to even find investors. Or sell our talent. There’s one little problem – Ken might not make a profit next season if he adds another £4m onto the £4m that’s already sitting in an account in the British Virgin Islands and managed out of Switzerland (the poor bastard). But every cloud has a silver lining – no need to pay tax!! When you’re charging £36 a ticket and selling shirts for £40, we’ve got money alright. Oh, and Warnock’s not stupid. He knows that if he sells Snodgrass for £6m, he won’t get £6m added to his pot, so what’s the point in selling him? Chareose yes it should be interesting in the summer if warnock stays on………if bates doesnt support him IT WILL without doubt be time to storm the ramparts with bloody revolution and find a new ownership at all costs…………hopefullt Bates recognizes that (that makes me laugh…….Ken knows hes got no choice to support warnock or all hell will break loose) Irving08 As I understand it, we have had to sell in order to break even these past few years. We may not need to sell, now the ground improvements have come to a (temporary ?) halt, but we have several highish earners whom it will be difficult to pass on. So more money will have to be found somehow from somewhere. Due to Grayson’s mismanagement (farming him out all season to Oldham), we may well be losing White (who was plainly not impressed), for whom neither Robinson (because he’s slow) or Pugh (because he’s weak) are adequate substitutes. He will have to be replaced, if he does go, and we need a creative midfielder, pacy forward and dominant central defender, in addition, if we are to go up next year – when this Division, I think, will be harder than now. Selling Snoddy – which I am not advocating – may be the only way of getting in the players we need, (mythical ?) Virgin Island account notwithstanding. Personally I’d much prefer to take 4m(?) for McCormack if we had to sell anyone….which, with the money you suggest we still have, might just be enough to get players of the required quality, depending on where we look for them…. TimPM The £4mil reserve could’ve been used on the ES Dev, or even on the 9mil budget that became more like £13mil… On the other hand, our £9mil budget was based on spending £7mil on a redev and average attendence of (IIRC) 24k. We’re just shy of that so far, but if Warnock can keep us playing like we are then I’d say we could have an average of 25-26k which would go towards the budget deficit for this season? West Ham alone upped the average by about 600. So maybe just offloading a handful of decent players not in our plans will do it? After all, if everybody’s contract ran out our 28 man squad would be about 18 – that’s a lot of wage to reallocate? TimPM Well, okay, 26k is a bit silly. But still! Tyler75 Just seen the incident in the box before West Ham scored – can’t believe the ref hasn’t seen it. Cole completely cleaned out O’Dea in a ‘challenge’ nowhere near the ball and more akin to something you would see up the road at Headingly. Right in front of the ref too ! We really haven’t had the rub of the green in the last 2 home games. Nothing less than 6 points from the games next week to keep our interest in the play-offs – still reliant on other teams dropping points though. If we make the play-offs I’d really fancy our chances the way we are playing at the moment and being so difficult to beat. MOT Captaincrash @Tyler75 Indeed the clearing out of O’Dea was a far bigger push than the nudge in the lead up to Snods disallowed effort for sure. That said Browns handball could have been punished with a pen…… A draw was a fair result probably but hard to take as Becchio’s goal seemed a dead cert winner. Captaincrash Good perfromance, belting atmosphere. Thought Robinson, Becchio and Clayton were outstanding and Brown again so pivotal in the sysytem. The last month gives me real hope that if (and thats a bloody huge IF) the key players stay on, we can give it a right good go next season. Here’s hoping. Tim Campbell Me and five lads from N.Ireland got over to see the match on Saturday and we could’nt think of a better place to spend St Paddy’s day. Loved the atmosphere inside the ground, brought back memories of the old days. I had to vote Robinson as my man of the match, the shift he put in was top notch and the tackles made me winch in the stands, SUPERB!! The highlights on the championship omitted the crunching tackles he put in which lifted the roof off elland road – I loved it!! tim campbell Funny how things work out col – bates ministry of propaganda is legendary!