“Perhaps money and big squads are not the answer” is a typically Bates-like response to fans concerns that the current squad does not have the depth to sustain a promotion charge this season, and that Neil Warnock – like Simon Grayson before him – has been massively underfunded.
His observation comes after “reviewing” the League Cup results, where he spotted no less than eight teams with “reportedly ‘rich’ owners” knocked out in the first round. This, apparently, is justification for a small, low-budget squad.
As Leeds United supporters grow increasingly restless and talk of dissent once again looms over Elland Road, at 80 years old, Ken Bates still isn’t shying away from a fight.
The Leeds United chairman moves seamlessly from justifying a lack of spending to a not-so-subtle attack on the Leeds United Supporters Trust
It has been a difficult summer for the club communication-wise. We signed a confidentiality agreement with the potential investors which means that we have said very little.
Because of this. rumours are rife. speculation about this has given licence to small groups of so-called fans with a hidden agenda to make wild unsubstantiated statements about the future of the club. What I will suggest is that when you read a so-called press release or statement on the web, don’t take it at face value. Ask yourself is there any evidence to support what is written? Is it just speculation, gossip? Or is there some other motive?
“So-called fans” are commonly featured in Ken Bates’ programme notes, it’s a staple part of the divide and conquer tactics he’s employed so masterfully to quash any efforts to undermine his Chairmanship throughout his seven and a half years at Elland Road.
Those opposed to Ken Bates will find his words rather ironic. Considering ulterior motives and giving a reasonable amount of scrutiny to the “facts” and claims of Ken Bates’ regime is precisely what most of the Chairman’s detractors would implore the rest of our fanbase to do.
But Ken Bates has the ultimate platform, and he continues to use it to devastating effect. His claim that those dissenting against him are a minority is as “wild and unsubstantiated” as any claim made by his opposition.
“There are ‘none as deaf as those that won’t hear’” Bates concludes. And he’s right, but the hard of hearing exist on both sides of the divide and Ken Bates demonstrates that quite brilliantly by once again failing to address the concerns of the Leeds United fanbase.
There’s only two ways this stand-off will end - either there’s communication and compromise between the two parties, or Ken Bates leaves Leeds United Football Club. If the latter isn’t going to happen any time soon, Ken Bates really should be attempting the former. Continued attacks on supporters only serves to heighten the unrest.