The one up-side to losing our captain, who scored 13 goals and assisted 15 more in a side the wheels fell off by December, is the £3m promised to the club, with £1.5m reported to be burning a hole in the manager’s pocket.

As hard as it is to see Snodgrass leave, especially for the happy-go-amazingly-lucky budgies of East Anglia, £3m is a lot of money to have to spend for Leeds. Neil Warnock, speaking in Cornwall, said:

We don’t know what’s going to happen with Ross [McCormack] and I want to strengthen that area by getting lads who we know will score goals in the Championship. It’ll be a relief when we sign someone of the calibre I’m looking for.

Rumours have since surfaced that Leeds are interested in Jay Bothroyd, Jermaine Beckford, Craig Mackail-Smith, and Nicky Maynard.

Warnock downplayed a potential move for West Ham’s Maynard, saying the link probably came about as his team enquired about the availability of a number of players in that position, and probably alerted the agent. It would seem that Warnock is definitely searching for a new striker. LUFC White Knights started a new feature on their site called the “Round Table” where RITGK and TSB avoided committing on any one striker, and I decided to throw the ultimate curveball by comparing a free-signing of Emile Heskey to Reading’s inspired signing of similar striker Jason Roberts last January.

Other fans, thinking slightly less outside the box, have inevitably latched onto the return of Jermaine Beckford, with not much else filling the #LUFC tag over the past few days. Beckford is rumoured to be on anywhere up to £40,000 a week at Leicester, with 3 years left to run, equating to about a £6m bill for Leicester. It seems an impossible task for Leeds to stump up that much even if Beckford has fallen out with manager Nigel Pearson, but if Beckford agreed to a pay cut, and Leicester waved the transfer fee, the deal could work – and Leicester’s books would look much more healthy. A move could well be on the cards, with more strikers arriving this summer and and expensive Beckford unlikely to be happily left in the reserves.

Meanwhile, although Warnock insisted he very much wants to keep Ross McCormack, reading between the lines he is far from confident of convincing the striker to stay. Speaking to the official site, he said:

It’s good to see him enjoying himself and that’s what we wanted him to do

A couple of clubs have asked about taking him, but I don’t want to let him go unless there is a player exchange. I’d rather keep him and Ross knows that.

I think we have to play it by ear. If he starts enjoying himself which he seems to be, we’ll have to see how it goes.

His mention of a player exchange ties in with the rumours of a potential player exchange with Brighton, with McCormack moving one way and Craig Mackail-Smith moving the other. Mackail-Smith is highly rated, but didn’t perform in the Championship last season as he would have liked. The powerful striker could manage only 5 goals and 9 assists last season.

But other rumours link Leeds to a direct replacement of Robert Snodgrass. Eddie Gray, writing in the YEP yesterday, downplayed that Warnock would look for a striker, saying he thought it was likely Warnock would look to replace Snodgrass with a midfielder. Snoddy was moved into “the hole” last season, and links to Peterborough’s George Boyd aren’t a bad shout. Boyd bagged 7 goals and 11 assists last season for a free-scoring but leaky Peterborough, playing at the tip of a diamond midfield. Some Posh fans feel Boyd hasn’t played as well since Mackail-Smith left Peterborough for Brighton last summer, though. As the two worked well together, Boyd is in the last year of his contract, and Mackail-Smith’s debut season for Brighton stalled, it might not be a bad idea to link the two up at Leeds and hope for their performances to blossom once they play alongside each other again?

The Lee Peltier move, that we first made noises about in May, is still on apparently. £800,000 seems to be the full-back’s price, compared to £300,000 a couple of months ago. Peltier should be a good addition, and the cash potentially paid for him might help with negotiations for Beckford?

Meanwhile, Sky Sports asked Leeds Twitterers if they would welcome Harry Kewell back to the club. Amazingly there were one or two positive responses, but the response was summarized by Sky Sports as “overwhelmingly negative”, For another illustration of how much more money there is in football today, Hary Kewell went to Liverpool for only £5m in 2003, only £3m of that went to the club due to Harry Kewell’s agent being given a ridiculous £2m, so Robert Snodgrass today – plying his trade for the first time in the Premier League, is worth the same as Kewell was then.

  • Joe Richardson

    Never thought I’d see an article with this title anytime soon.
    Obviously I’d love Peltier and Beckford from Leicester; if we could manage to get them both I reckon the only position I wouldn’t be happy with is the hole behind the striker… You know, where Howson made a living and Snodgrass played in last year.
    I don’t want to sign anyone more the Beckford, but the proposed scenario looks a little optimistic due to the wage situation. A footballer’s career realistically runs 15 years if they’re lucky, I can’t see someone offering to take a pay cut when they’ll probably never earn that money again in their life.
    But remaining optimistic, I’m just grateful to finally see a transfer window of imports cushioning the blow of our quality exports.

    • Topvalleywhite

      Point taken but it’s not like dropping from £300 to £200, take in to account the percentage of the Leicester fee his wages at Everton and a year on 40k the lads come out of it the right side, let’s see if he wants to play for us

  • Ron

    Carroll moving to West Ham should free up Maynard. I’d like to think we can end up with a better striker than those that have been linked. Call me optimistic. I must admit it’s quite exciting being on the hunt for goalscorers. I’m starting to undrestand why clubs over-pay for strikers time and time again. Good shout re. Boyd and CMS reunion. We need some 3rd party teamates who can stop the fights between Pompey players and the Leeds boys.

    • Dje

      I’m always a little wary of reuniting winning strike partnerships that had worked at other clubs. I know Boyd and Mackail-Smith are a better cut of cloth, but It is a bit like saying that if we got Charlie Austin in then Paynter would suddenly be a 20+ goal machine. Whatever they had right at Swindon seems to have lived and died at Swindon.

      • Ron

        I hear you, but player harmony is important and bringing them back together may just speed up the bedding-down process. I like the fact we have cherry-picked Pompey thus far for the same reason, however I am sad to see them flounder. I respect their support like few other clubs and would like to see them back up sooner rather than later. I think Jay Bothroyd brings a lot at this level and would work well with McCormack off him. Warnock could get in his ear I’m sure.

        • Dje

          I agree about our Portsmouth lads – gives a good unity down the spin of the team. I think Portsmouth fans are just desperate to survive right now and would be happy to take any league. I feel sorry for them too, but we’ve been there and it is survivable.

          • Chareose

            Whats happening at Portsmouth is far worse than what happened at Leeds…. They are facing complete liquidation and the dissolution of the Club. Their fans are already planning the Clubs new name for example……….

            It annoys me that leeds fans constantly harp on about us taking players from a relegated side but they need to bear in mind that POrtsmouth had a very good defence and solid midfeild. They lacked goals and if it wasnt for 10 point deduction and subsequent asset stripping of players and morale last season would have finnished a respectable mid table….

            The next two or three signings will basicly make the difference between automatic promotion and playoffs…….. If they are average fair then its Playoffs at best.

            Really we need cash 3-4 million handed to Warnock ASAP

          • TimPM

            LUFC 1919 did cease to exist. We weren’t liquidated, but we’re not technically the same group we were in 1919 I think?

            Terrible what’s happened with Pompey. Some of my family come from over there so always had a soft spot

          • Dje

            @TimPM

            My ancient history of Leeds is a bit hazy and my web connection is currently too slow to check, but I’m pretty sure the reason we had to reform in 1919 was because we were kicked out of the league and fined for continuing to take pay professional footballers and keep income during the Great Wat – when the professional game was supposed to be suspended and only amateur teams and leagues were permitted.

            Quite interesting in its own right, but a very different situation from Portsmouth – although I bet many Portsmouth fans would see the irony of being kicked out of the league for being a payed professional team rather than a bunch of unwaged amateurs.

          • TimPM

            No, I mean the company Leeds United 1919, founded in 1919, survived until 2007 when Kenneth Bates was forced to dissolve it after turning roughly 25m of debt to 35m.

            2007… 12 years short of a century. Nice going Ken.

      • bahraini sheikh

        Maybe Colin thought he was signing Charlie Austin when he signed Rodolph.

  • Dje

    I would definitely like to see pace in the armoury of our new striker, whoever it’d be.

    I can’t see it being Beckford though the gap in the pay we’d be able to offer (rightfully, for once) is too much. With Carroll agreeing to move to West Ham old Maynard might become more of an interest to Warnock.

  • marcco62

    I’ve read that Carroll not interested in going to West Ham?

    • Dje

      He’s signed on loan for the season for £2m with a transfer in place for £17m if West Ham stay up.

      • marcco62

        Soz Dje. Just goes to prove don’t believe paper talk just wait for the facts :)

        • Dje

          Lol – I heard it on the radio this morning whilst I was more asleep than awake. After posting my reply I did suddenly think that I was 99% sure that it was what I heard but 1% doubt that maybe it was all just me still dreaming.

  • HunsletWhites

    Beckford maybe, but please not Kewell. Let nobody forget how he kept leaving half way through the season to play for Australia in some local competition, and what loyalty did we get from him? “I want Keegan’s #7 shirt.. Liverpool are the greatest team ever” etc etc as he sat in the stand at Anfield STILL a Leeds United player!
    And what’s happened to the TO? All these transfers are simply balancing each other out. Has Bates pulled another fast one?

    • Allan

      No way should Kewell be brought back…not even as a programme seller. Not too sure about Beckford either but at least he stayed to make sure we got out of Div 1.

  • Colin

    Beckford is the expensive option, but he’s the only one on that list that you can guarantee would work and score 20 goals, something we’ve not had since a guy called Beckford.
    He’d fit perfectly with Warnock hoof ball football. If money is no object, its a no brainer, get Becks. But if money is an issue then go for the cheaper option. But you get what you pay for. Buy cheap, get Paynters.

    • Dje

      £1.5m doesn’t buy a lot to be honest. It certainly wouldn’t buy an in-form striker of the quality we need. So we’d be looking at players whose careers have turned wayward, probably in the Premiership, and are looking to re-find their goal-scoring touch, or a good foreign import. Both are possible gold mines but both are very risky strategies, for as you say, you get what you pay for.

      • TimPM

        Should’ve written that better: £1.5 is physically burning a hole in his pocket, but he’s got £3m overall for Snoddy so we should have £3m to throw about. If we do get Peltier for £800k you can probably take away £500k from that?

        • Dje

          I recognized the £3m total you were talking about, but I’m following our form in these things so I would be very surprised if Warnock really had £3m to spend.

          And even more surprised if he spent £3m on one player! He’s never been a big spender like that and we, most definitely have not been.

  • mrbigwheels

    Whatever anyone thinks of agents, my experience tells me… they seem to know what is going on… so,

    Reference Leeds and transfer costs doing the ‘loop’. My viewpoint from that.

    Peltier……… slight stalemate. Seems other interest now. £0.85m
    Boyd………… Barry Fry is chattering away and talking £1m
    Mackail-Smith… Swop possible plus monies to Leeds leaves this one doubtful.
    Maynard……… Definite approach I’m told. Wait and see?. talking possible £2m.

    Chareose suggests Warnock needs £3-4m ASAP. He may well be right.
    I suppose within the present timing and situation NW needs McCorky to stay! I’m trying to work out what cash NW has actually got in his pocket as of …right now.

  • Michael Lazarou

    I think NW should have it out with the board or new owners and say to them do you want me to take Leeds into the premiship if yes then tell me whats happing with the takeover , and let me have some funds so i can complete my team to take to the premiship, to get Good 20plus strikers in you need at least 3m for one and to replace snoody another 3m , or I won’t be able job properly or really challenge for promotion, because you only get out what you pay for

    • TimPM

      If there is a takeover…

      • Allan

        Excellent point.

    • Dje

      Bit of a risky strategy to lay down an ultimatum like that. I’m not sure losing our manager a fortnight before the season kicks off would serve us very well.

    • Ryan

      I agree with DJE, for example would you dare say stuff like that to your boss and make demands at your workplace? As well as this why exactly does it take 3m to replace snoddy or get a 20+ goal a season guy what was it we paid for snoddy and beckford? Approximately 200-300k combined for both of them. Gradel also only cost a couple of hundred thousand.

  • Josh

    I don’t want be a wet blanket but as HunsletWhites said the players that we are paying for seem to be balancing out with the players which have be sold.
    I am getting even more pessimistic about the taker over as it’s been said that the buyers (if they are buyers) are developers. The more I read about it the more I think that it could be Bates playing his games.

    • marcco62

      I know what you mean Josh but the “new owners” will not be putting any money in until they sign on the dotted line. We all hope it’s not a smokescreen from Bates but I hope that NW would not be that gullible so we just have to keep the faith and keep hoping for a little longer.

      • Chareose

        Erm warnock could be in on it, it suits him that there is a take over mooted because he can sell it to potential signings “club will be taken over soon, good times a head” so he signs cheap players by selling his main assets then as the season starts Bates announces that is no take over but there is a partial investment from a consortium named “Setab”…. Which is Bates backwards. Setab will be the main stake holder at Ellend road and are interested in building a casino and a hotel. Many comment on the remarkable similarity between Serabs chairperson and Kenneth bates. However thousands of morons pay for new season tickets and sing “mot”…..

        • mrbigwheels

          If that is your thoughts… fair enough… but you may well be correct with the final scenario Chareose, who knows at this stage?….

          As far as Warnock could be in on it… then as well as hoodwinking you, me, the fans, lust, some of the press and the playing staff… Bates will definitely have pulled one over on Neil Warnock and Mick Jones… trust me!.

          I think you’ve got to remember Bates still owns this club and the takeover may all go tits up. bearing that in mind Warnock can only presently work within Bates ownership… day to day to day… If new owners come along then …bingo, Warnock will be able to move forward to a far greater degree.

          It’s all about blooody timing at the moment… and yes, it’s ticking on.

        • marcco62

          I think you’re taking paranoid to a new level lol

          • marcco62

            Sorry that remark was for Chareose, I’m pants on this site :)

  • Fierywhitecelt

    What ever is said, I’m lookin forward to progress this season. I really want premier leagu footy but it has to be at the right time. I want to look forward to playing man u again and have a reasonable chance of winning. I miss the anticipation soo much. Warnock instills confidence. I think a striker is important. We get a decent striker then I’m going to be very confident about the season. The takeover is taking way too long. Here’s to Leeds everyone, and hopefully an epic season ahead!

    • Allan

      I’d like to know what has happened to the signing of Austin…..all has gone quiet on that front since it was announced the clubs had agreed a fee. If we have run out of cash again despite the selling of Snoddy then this could be one answer and would mean the signing of any
      icing on the cake” players has also gone out of the window.As said above the takeover is taking too long and everything is still up in the air. NW needs time to get the players he wants and bed them into the team before the start of the season.

      • TimPM

        Work permit at the moment. They can take a couple of weeks but it should be given straight away because he fulfills the (FA’s?) rules.

        • Allan

          Thanks for that…..I’d forgotten about work permits for non-europeans.

          • Ryan

            It says on the Leeds OS that he will be joining the squad against Preston probably and when Ross said about the spine of the team he said Austins name as if they already know he is definately going to feature this season for them. Check the ‘Ross is shaping up for the future’ Article on the OS its somewhere near the bottom.

  • Johnny Rub

    DEVELOPERS – I would hope that anyone taking over this club was a developer. the hope is that there developments will be paid for by their own money or from the benefits of reaching the premier league. man citys delvelopers seem to be doing rather well.

    as for beckford, he is still to prove himself at this level, so paying millions and 40000 a week would be too much of a gamble. i thought he did ok for everton but for that type of money you can get yourself much better at this level. ive not been impressed by warnocks signings but upfront is one area he doesnt usually scrimp in.

  • Rob MoT

    He scores when he wants, he scores when he wants, he’s Jermaine Beckford, he scores when he wants!!

    I know it and you know it Beckford is on his way back. They’ve offered McCormack more money and word from the horses mouth is they are trying to make it worthwhile but I’d put my season ticket on the return of Beckford!!

  • Ferks

    I really hope we don’t see Beckford in a Leeds shirt again. I remember watching him spend most of his time on the pitch sulking around as no one had passed him the ball for 30 seconds!!! It got even worse once the papers got a hold of how well he was doing he was starting to believe the hype they were writing about him and start shooting from 35-40yds out. Lets be honest in that season of 31 goals if Becchio hadn’t have played alongside him I think he would have struggled to have scored 10 goals that season!!! He always seemed to need 10 chances before he scored 1 goal. Don’t get me wrong I will be forever grateful for one of the most rewarding games in my life at Old Trafford but I never want to see him in the Leeds Shirt again.

    • Allan

      I am in full agreement with you on all your points. Too many players believe the hype in the press or what their agents tell them. He wanted the PL, got it and failed to meet up with expectations.

    • Colin

      Ferks – Sorry but completely disagree. You’re talking madness.
      31 goals in a season yet needs 10 chances to score 1 goal? So using that ideology he should have scored 310 goals that season??
      And if it was all down to Becchio, why was Beckford a goalscoring machine, BEFORE Becchio? Do you remember him playing alongside Tresor Kandol? I presume you think that Beckford’s 20 league goals that season were down to Kandol?

      For me a striker can sulk as much as he wants if he gets 31 goals.

      141 Leeds appearances, 85 goals – that’s not a bad record, it’s not even a good record, it’s an AMAZING record.

      • TimPM

        Beckford scored 1 in every 4-5 shots, Becchio scored 1 in every 2-3 that season I think. Maybe it’s something Beckford needs to work on, he did waste some chances, but let’s not forget it was his pace and positioning that led to many of those chances and he only spent 3 full seasons at ER since being plucked from ER. Like you say Colin, his end product in League 1 for both us and Iron was ridiculously good, over 1 goal every 2 games for us and nearly 1 in 2 for Scunthorpe.

        It didn’t come off for him at Everton. I think he needed to help buildup more there, and that’s not one of his strengths. But when you look at his last spell at Leicester last season I think he scored more goals than cup games and about 5 goals in 10 games. He’s shown he can do it at Championship level.

        • Colin

          This vs Chelsea is an absolute peach: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tfU8jUtEWus

          • Ryan

            That is the sign of a good striker though he may miss chanced but he wants more to make up for it.. Would you rather a striker miss one or two chances and then hide from the ball incase he got another chance and missed that too? Or would you rather them gamble and keep getting those chances.

  • YorkshireJohn

    And of course the Goal v Bristol. I agree with Ferks, Beckford missed too much. In the end if we do not have funds from a take over we will be where we were last year with the same result.

    By the way,I have been involved in many due diligence processes worth a lot more than this one is and this one is too long in the making. There is either a hole in the finances or the Master Bates is holding out for more than they are willing to give. Or perhaps they have found the Gypsy’s curse to scary.

  • mattbb2

    there was a comment at the end of the club statement about the exclusivity period – that there would NOT be any annoouncement in the near future. So we shouldnt be surprised by that – the reasons for this are anyones guess, but it may simply be a case that the exclusivity period was a very long one, and that there were specified time periods within which certain trasnactions could be achieved, ie the purchase of the ground. Just reaching I guess, but they are valid reasons.

  • frankyeboah

    im not sure whether its a takeover because its never been called that officially investment in the casino and hotel more likely with a fee paid to leeds annually.i think more concrete evidence would have leaked by now if it was as big a deal as lust are proclaiming.bates is looking for backers that allow him to stay in charge matthew harding anyone.

  • Matthew

    Rudolph Austin officially a Leeds player.

    http://www.leedsunited.com/page/PlayerProfiles/0,,10273~61214,00.html

  • Old Goat

    Probably a good move for AOB if it’s accurate. I’d think he’d be on pretty good money having come to us from the Prem so it would represent a significant payroll saving.
    NW’s still got Paynter Rachubka and Conolly to offload, though like a few others on here I’m thinking Nunez will start the season with us. He’s a bit lightweight but he’s still a Honduran international.
    Not real keen on the Beckford scenario. Respect him for what he did but whoever lines up at the front for us this year is going to have to do an awful lot of foraging for themselves. Reckon Warnock will play his midfield plenty deep (as he did when he improved our defence post-Grayson) but the downside is that our attacking strategy is likely to be based on speculative diagonal balls and hope that somebody gets one or two under control before they get mobbed. Becchio seems to love that sort of a game but I doubt Beckford wouldn’t thrive in it.

    • Matthew

      Beckfords wages are the major issue here.

      Why pay 35k a week + potential 2 million fee, when you can resign Ross McCormack to a 15-20k a week contract(Example), for much less?

      Seems stupid to get rid of a decent striker in Ross and pay a few million extra for Beckford + millions in wages.

      Better to speand the Snoddy money on a new Winger + RB and leave it be.

      • TimPM

        Question is whether McCormack will re-commit.

        If you can get Beckford for about 1mil and pay 30k a week, on a 3-4 year contract, surely that’s better than just sitting there for a year before McCormack leaves? You can’t force them to commit…

        • Matthew

          Ross will go to the highest bidder. He isn’t one to make the Premier league excuse.

  • Michael Lazarou

    Rumour has it that graig Bellamy wants to come and play for Leeds instead of Cardiff , NW if you are on to him sign him up quick, I think he will fit well in the Leeds team

    • Matthew

      I remember him, in his time on loan with Cardiff when he played against us it was virtually all him, he was the key to their victory, their attacks, virtually everything. It was like the Craig Bellamy show.

      Damn good player too, but on 80,000 a week. I’m sure if you polled most fans, they wouldnt want the club to speand over 4 million in wages a year on him.

  • gold price

    Hoolahan can’t even play on the wing, that was proved in his first season at the club, he is best just behind the striker at the tip of a diamond.

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