GFH braced for u-turn as takeover chaos continues? TSS February 4, 2014 Leeds United 213 Comments Italian newspaper La Gazetta Dello Sport is today reporting a potential collapse of Massimo Cellino’s plan to takeover Leeds United Football Club following a weekend of confusion at Elland Road. It seemed Cellino had cleared an almighty hurdle today as speculation spread that he would pass the Football League’s Owners & Directors test (more commonly known as the Fit & Proper Test). While some had previously speculated Cellino’s two convictions for fraud would lead to the Football League rejecting his takeover attempt, under British law both of these convictions (the last being 2001) are now considered ‘spent’ meaning they can’t be used against him by the Football League when they come to making a decision. The news won’t sit well with many Leeds United fans, but the criteria laid out by the Football League has to be entirely objective if any decision they make is to be upheld in court. That means the Football League can only act within the parameters of British law which prevent them holding spent convictions and upcoming trials against the Italian. As such, the Italian’s takeover looked to be edging ever-closer to completion but La Gazetta Dello Sport are now reporting a change of mood within the GFH camp who are today sitting down with Mike Farnan and Andrew Flowers’ consortium to discuss their offer to takeover the club. The events of Friday and Saturday seem to have created a split within GFH Capital. While some shareholders seem to be working to bring Cellino’s deal to a close, others are happy to consider their options following the sacking of Brian McDermott and the subsequent outpouring of anger from Leeds United fans. “It seems that the differences between Cellino and GFH Capital may lead to a resounding u-turn” report the Italian newspaper Cellino meanwhile continues his charm offensive in a desperate attempt to win over the Leeds United fanbase. In another interview with Simon Austin, published in today’s Sun newspaper, Cellino dangles the Premier League dream. “I already love this club and want to do something right for it. I want to get it back where it belongs, in the Premier League.” Promises to repurchase Elland Road and fund Leeds United’s climb back to the Premier League are understandably tempting following so many years in the gutter, but if the events of Friday night are any indication as to what a Cellino-led Leeds United would look like, it’s hard to imagine any progress being made under the leadership of an unscrupulous man whose antics are always going to distract from the main event. But as rumour spreads of mounting debts at Elland Road, we also have to question whether Farnan and Flowers consortium of businessmen has the necessary clout to take this club in the right direction. They may have the best of intentions for the club and provide more stability than Cellino’s antics are ever going to allow, but at this juncture, its imperative that they can prove they have the necessary financial means to not only purchase Leeds United, but also to finance a club that’s going to continue posting losses for the short to medium term. Ultimately, there is no perfect outcome for Leeds United, but I remain firmly in the Farnan and Flowers camp. While I do have some concerns about the level of funds they can bring to the party, they pale in comparison to the concerns I have about Cellino taking over this club. There’s an assumption many Cellino supporters (of which there seem to be a growing number) are making that he’ll bankroll Leeds United to Championship glory, yet I see no evidence of that when reviewing his record from Cagliari. Instead, what you’ll find is a unnervingly familiar situation that so closely resembles Ken Bates’ Leeds United, it should have us all panicking. When it comes to players, he tends to buy cheap then sell for a profit. Supporter relations are basically non-existent, in fact, he’s even banned a group from the ground for raising objections to his leadership. There’s the court cases too and the blatant disregard for honesty he’s already demonstrated at Leeds by first claiming he had no choice but to sack McDermott, then blaming GFH Capital while insisting he never wanted to fire McDermott in the first place. One thing is for sure, this club desperately needs a hefty cash injection. But accepting Cellino as the new owner of Leeds United feels a lot like selling our souls to the devil. Fredo Cellino in……..Consortiums are no good i highly doubt they have the financial backing we need and what happens when they all start falling out with each other……..I like Brian McDermott and the whole thing on friday was embarrassing but i blame the current owners for that……….how did Cellino and co even get McDermotts phone number without the current owners knowing about it? mrbigwheels Ask the Chairman about Mcd’s phone number… Leeds For Now Whatever the outcome is going to be, please make it soon, we dont want this takeover dragging on to the summer, If all the parties “love” leeds like they say they do, its in their power to get it sorted,Cellino,GFH, Flowers, whoever. sort it out, its getting embarrassing. Hatchet Man we are losing £1m a month, I doubt the consortium can stump up the asking price of £25m plus have the cash to take us forward. If only Cellino had kept the status quo (rockin all over the world) until the summer and seen how things pan out, then the fans may have backed him. Billy Boy Why is it that my gut instinct is telling me that Cellino and Bates know each other ? Could it be that Bates enabled Cellino to get his foot through the door by passing on his inside knowledge of the club without GFH being aware of it. Probably my mind working overtime but nothing would surprise me at the moment Dfooster Mind working over time. I think its common knowledge bates owns elland road but beyond that he has no influence and there’s a clause in that which means we can buy it back. He got out because the club was no longer sustainable without him pumping in his own wealth which he was never prepared to do. He left us mortgaged up to our eye balls and made a few quid in the process, he would have considered that a victory but he’s gone. kurt dunne Celino is not the answer he will screw us over he has no money mike faran does he is loaded and they will be more than capeable to fund us markman As we have a large Norwegian supporters club i suggest they contact their government and suggest it would be a good idea to diversify some of their soverigne wealth fund and invest in Leeds UTD hampshire white Even if Celino has the money (and is willing to spend it!) his track record is appalling. Brian McDermott is building a squad that will get us promoted in the next couple of years. The consortium knows the state of play about LUFC finances. If they can take it on, they’ll give B McD a proper chance to develop long term stability. Successful clubs don’t change their managers twice a season. Even those who can spend £100million in a transfer window generally do better when they stick with a good manager long term. Brian McDermott has come out of this fiasco with his reputation greatly enhanced. I hope he was persuaded to come back because he believes there’ll be a better bid than Cellino’s on the table. Irving08 Brian has indeed come out of this fiasco with his personal credentials enhanced, though I would use the word ‘confirmed': I never doubted these. But his football credentials surely have yet to be proved. His signings have, for the most part, been underwhelming and do not add up, in my view, to building a squad for promotion. Our best players this season have been inherited from previous Managers or promoted from within. In addition, even his strongest supporters must have been a little concerned by the number of formations he has got through in just over half a season. In his defence, it may be said that, before January, he did not have the wingers he wanted in order to play the style that brought him promotion at Reading. But a team playing with two wingers needs at least one muscular and pacy midfielder to be sucessful. Such players are thin on the ground at this level; they cost good money or require a broad recruitment base. Celino is a man with both knowledge of European footbal and money to play with. He is more likely to provide Brian with the palyers he needs than any of the consortia currently on view. As for time-scale, I don’t think we can afford to wait a couple of seasons to be in a challenging position; nor I think will Cellino wait that long. But I do want Brian to be given the chance to show what he can do under a driven owner. TSS Nothing we hadn’t already heard, but FT now reporting on Winding-Up Order issued by Andrew Flowers against Leeds United following collapse of Sport Capital takeover attempt. https://twitter.com/PhilHayYEP/status/430750192992673794 Hearing will take place in March, though it’ll never realistically come to that since any takeover will happen before then you’d think. mrbigwheels What is this designed to achieve?. Is this a block to any takeover? TSS Yeah, pretty much. But to be honest with you, it all seems rather futile. If Cellino is cleared to takeover the club and pays off the debt owed to Enterprise, there’s no case to answer in court. I’m sure it complicates the whole process somehow which gives Flowers a bit more time to get some proper consideration for his offer, but it’ll never end up in court. mrbigwheels Thanks… Cellino may well get totally pee’d off and withdraw. He certainly exhibits an autocratic style that may be worse than Bates. What is clear, (to me), is LUFC is possibly far too big a club for him to handle long term based on his present approach. The medium/longer term would see a total disintegration of the fan base and the soul of this Club. Pity really because the Club does need a man with £50m to play around or gamble with…imo, to buy the assets, pay off the dept and buy some quality. Not sure if any of the prospects can fund that… . Irving08 Joining the debate late, your comment on his ‘present approach’ seems apt. The man cannot be a fool, so why would he not adapt his approach to suit English conditions ? He won’t necessarily behave the same as he did last week, which was as impulsive as it was decisive). The reaction to his actions must have had a chastening effect. Your further comment that ‘the Club does need a man with £50m to play around or gamble with’ points to a very strong point in his favour. We are in a bad place financially and without real money being put in the club we will be forced to sell our few saleable assets just to survive. If GFH’s will had prevailed, our star asset (McCormack) would have been sold a number of times, including (it seems) including last Friday. So much for Mr Cellino – he has good and bad points with a potential for learning. But I cannot think of one good thing to say about a consortium of owners. Consortia have three fatal defects, in my view; (a) unclear chains of command and responsibility (GFH have shown the perils of having too many bosses); (b) the club can end up being indebted to a whole range of people, creating a complex financial web; (c) the individuals concerned will, by definition, not be cash-rich and especially in the present circumstances – where there is a premium of gaining control of the club quickly – this can result in having to resort to loans, with attendant crippling rates of interest. Some fans may be attracted to a consortium for the same reason as they liked GFH – it can bring a greater sense of paerticipation in the club”s affairs. Diffuse (or skint) leadership empowers the lower echelons. I am not sure if this participative bonus is a good thing or not. But for every fan who wants to feel empowered there will be a dozen for whom success on the field is the greater priority. Many of us want to feel our club stands for more than just ‘success’, but LUFC is too big to be just a ‘life-style’ (which I don’t mean to be derogatory). And there will be no ‘long-term stability’ at Leeds – to quote from an earlier post – until we are sucessful on the field. mrbigwheels Great reply Irving to my value anyway. I’m quite open at the moment, awaiting consortia proposals I suppose although I know deep down your points are totally valid. Instant stability is required I’m afraid and I can not see where that is coming from. Brian has obviously been papering over the facts known to him and may have affected his overall performance and actual failures, recently. GFH-C, certainly David Haigh have been spinning plates without transparency and those plates are now crashing down, hence the absolute shock the fan base now holds on the LUFC financial status. A cleaning out of the messy Club cupboard is necessary once again and I suppose my head comes back to my original statement, above and wish I could see a way forward. As you suggest, the Italian cannot be a fool and hopefully the fan base cries of last weekend may be making him think what football at Leeds is about and what he needs to do to be realistic… mrbigwheels The one thing that Cellino said…. of the Football League that made me chuckle was… Why do the FL want to look at my criminal record… Why can’t I look at theirs?. People don’t know how to fun a football club in England… (or very close to that, in my memory). Irving08 Cheers MBW. I noticed that too – the man has a point ! markyb Isn’t the debt with Gfh? Doesn’t that mean Gfh have to deal with flowers before they can sell? TSS No, businesses don’t work like that. You take out loans on the individual business, not the umbrella company. The debt will be in Leeds United’s name as it’s a standalone business owned by GFH. If sold, the debt should transfer with it (though this should all be factored into the takeover deal really). markyb In that case administration here we come again. Cellino won’t buy the business then pay the debts off. TSS Debt is part of the business, that’s part of what you’re buying. He’s not going to buy LUFC and not pay them, if the club goes into admin he loses the £25m he paid for it. Ron Shirt sponsor performs sliding tackle on Leeds United bid By Andrew Bounds The battle for control of Leeds United intensified as Enterprise Insurance, the club’s shirt sponsor, moved to wind up the company. Enterprise, whose managing director Andrew Flowers is a spurned bidder, has filed a winding-up petition for the Championship club over an alleged unpaid debt. It will be heard in the High Court in March. The Gibraltar-based insurer issued the petition on January 29, a day after talks with Sport Capital, a consortium including Mr Flowers, a life-long Leeds fan, and David Haigh, managing director of Leeds, collapsed, the Financial Times has learnt. The move appears designed to prevent a sale toMassimo Cellino, owner of Cagliari, the Italian top flight club, who clinched an agreement to buy 75 per cent of Leeds on Friday. Since then, the manager, Brian McDermott, has been sacked and reinstated, and Mr Cellino’s lawyer, Chris Farnell, has been asked to leave Leeds’ Elland Road base. GFH Capital, the Bahraini investor seeking to sell the bulk of its stake in the club, has reiterated that it remains in charge. In debt proceedings, courts potentially have the power to reverse the sale of assets, freeze bank accounts and even order an administration or liquidation. Leeds, which has had a difficult financial history, entered administration in 2007, with £35m in debts. Mr Cellino has applied to the Football League to pass its “fit and proper person” test required of club owners. Leeds city council, which owns the club’s training ground, has also written to the league calling for a “thorough vetting” of Mr Cellino. Mr Cellino, who made his money in agriculture, has two fraud convictions, dating from 1996 and 2001, which his lawyers argue are spent. Leeds fans, who still turn up in their tens of thousands despite the three-times English champion’s relegation from the Premier League in 2004, have protested against Mr Cellino. Enterprise has apparently scrapped its shirt sponsorship of the club. In 2012 it lent Leeds £1.7m at 7 per cent interest for repayment in 2015. Mike Smith, a corporate insolvency expert from Jameson Smith, said the insurers’ move was “risky”, since the debt must be proved in law or costs could be awarded against it. Unless settled, the petition must also be advertised in the London Gazette. “Other creditors can use the same petition to pursue their own debts so I suspect it is solely being used as a bargaining chip to apply pressure to the board of Leeds United,” he said. Mr Flowers has reportedly joined a third bidding consortium, which includes Adam Pearson, former Hull City chairman, Mike Farnan, ex-Sunderland marketing director, and Gary Verity, who runs Welcome to Yorkshire, a tourism promotion agency. They are understood to be offering around £30m in staged payments. GFH bought Leeds in December 2012 for £17m from Ken Bates, the former Chelsea owner. Mr Flowers and GFH declined to comment. Leeds United had revenues of £31m in the year to June 2012 and made a pre-tax loss of £2.3m, balanced by £2.5m in net player sales. Its debts were largely to linked businesses, but it had already received more than £13m in advanced ticket income and sponsorship and catering revenue until 2017. It does not own its 40,000-seat stadium. Dfooster So mr flowers is happy to finish off one of the biggest clubs in England once and for all and to leave tens of thousands of Leeds fans with no club to support just to be spiteful to GFH and the Italian who nobody had even heard of two weeks ago? And he calls himself a Leeds fan! Dr Zen No, he is not doing that. It’s a tactic to delay the sale to Cellino. Irving08 So that’s where we are. Thanks. markyb Wouldnt want cellino buying elland road full stop. Over in Italy he’s not bothered where cagliari play so if he got his hands on the ground nothing to stop him selling up and moving us. As for the winding up order Gfh really took flowers for a mug. Used his money then used him to get cellino interested. If you thought bates was bad these make del boy trotter look like bill gates. And this will rumble on and on Helen LUFC I can’t understand how the club is still haemorrhaging so much money? It’s really odd, I thought GFH would have got us into a stable financial position after a year in charge, but we are still owing a million a month? Why are we still owing money?! I am not against a takeover away from GFH, they have been useless. I don’t think any of the names mentioned sounds exciting, and am constantly bemused as to why we should be struggling to attract a new buyer, but I am seeing it through a supporters viewpoint, I suppose they are seeing it through the accountancy books. I still don’t understand why McCormack didn’t move, either? I know he spoke of his family been settled, but is he really going to be here after summer? I can’t see it, particularly if Strachan starts to get him more involved in the Scotland squad. Apparently Gordon was there against Ipswich, but his comments on the current set up not repeatable for some reason. If GFH stay in charge will we go into administration again? Presumably prospective buyers can handle the current debt, but still can’t see any way forward for the first team in terms of quality signings coming. TSS I don’t think the loss of money was unexpected TBH with you. The club was losing vast amounts of money when they took over from Bates, but unlike Bates, they haven’t been selling players to balance the books. You also have to factor in the millions of pounds in debt Ken Bates took out against future ST sales and it doesn’t paint a healthy picture of club finances. It’ll be 2-3 years before Leeds can balance the books no matter who takes over so it’s imperative that they have the funds to bankroll us ’til then. mrbigwheels When does the repayment to ticketus stop? Assuming you’ll know… being an expert an’ all. Well done David. TSS I think it’s 2015 but hard to keep track of the madness at this club. mrbigwheels Oh… A lot of us were thinking two years,,, last year and this season. Helpful but with respect… hope it finishes end of this season. Damn you Bates….. TSS From FT article today ” it had already received more than £13m in advanced ticket income and sponsorship and catering revenue until 2017″ Not specify which debts run ’til when, but it gives you an idea of how bad the situation was when Ken Bates left. mrbigwheels Terrible situation. The only reasoning for GFH to buy Leeds was a source of positive bottom line to them and hefty monthly fund management fees out of LUFC into their income, adding to our monthly losses. Assume the circa £10m of loans that have accrued will be set with LUFC and not being repayed out of the potential takeover value. mrbigwheels Just had it confirmed ticketus expires end of this season so that’s circa £3m… Out of contract players save circa £5m off seasons wage bill. One could assume we’re carrying that now as most of them are periferal… let’s say… Irving08 It ends ths year (I think) MBW. Helen LUFC Phil Hay says Chris Farnell will be the new CEO. Can’t see McDermott staying or being allowed to stay if he is right. TSS That’s the lawyer who failed to understand his client hadn’t completed a takeover Farnell is supposed to be facilitating. Madness. Dfooster We are in a lot of debt and the other consortiums don’t have the spare cash for anything more than purchasing the club. It might be best if we get cellino in and let him buy back elland road which the rent is crippling us. I’m not happy with some of the Italian guys antics last week, but I think he realised us leeds fans are a passionate lot who won’t be walked over. If he gives the manager a war chest and we get back to the premier league debt free then sury that’s better than scratting about for money living month to month under a consortium that hasn’t two pennies to rub together. I can kind of see where GFH were coming from by preferring the Italians bid, even if they were coming out if it better off. We need to tread careful, no club is a possibility, as opposed to a club run like many other premier league clubs is what’s at stake here. Ev I don’t think there are many Leeds fans who think Cellino would be good for Leeds to be honest. The ones who are posting online appear to have an agenda. You would think after 8 years of Ken Bates that fans would be terrorfied of a worse Italian version. Having read the latest article by the independent the thought of this guy running the club I adore absolutely terrorfies me ; During one of his convictions the courts said Cellino had “marked criminal tendencies … capable of using every kind of deception to achieve his ends”. Then their is the stadium fiasco and the fact hes banned a whole group of fans from attending games because they disagreed with his policies. He appears to have his supporters in Italy but what Italians might view as slightly eccentric isn’t necessarily the same in the UK. However nothing good happens to Leeds these days (yes I sound like Marvin the paranoid android) So I expect Cellinos take over to be approved and for his tenure to more or less mirror that of Ken Bates………….. Year 1 – Many fans are ecstatic and believe a bright future is ahead. Some money is spent on exotic transfers, excitement abounds amongst rose tinted spectacle wearers. Year 2 – We still might do ok in the future and as with Bates, didn’t Cellino “Save us from destruction ?” Year 3 – Ok starting to get impatient now, we just sold 2 of our best young players, feels a bit stagnant Year 4 – Cellino abuses a segment of leeds support for “moaning”. “Arnt you grateful I saved you from Andrew Flowers wrath ?” Fans laugh it off ” hah bless him just a bit eccentric isn’t he” Year 5 – 50 % of Leeds original supporter base from the early 60s is starting to pass away, the remaining fans express their concerns at the “lost generations” with thousands of young leeds boys supporting “Citeh” instead Year 6 – After a group of leeds fans are banned and Gary Cooper is publicly flogged in front of 5000 fans at Elland Road, 2000 fans arrange a boycott, the clatter of wheel chairs, walking sticks and the clip clop dentures can be heard as they march Year 7 – Leeds fans are up in arms at the latest sale of our best young player Joey Bloggs, a talented midfielder to Norwhich City. The attendances drop from 5000 to 2000 as a result of this travesty Year 8 – Cellino is arrested for trying to build a new Leeds stadium out of polystyrene but escapes to Miami leaving Leeds in limbo. The new stadium doesn’t pass safety regulations and sad news is announced as Lucas the Kop Cats body is found lodged in the foundations of the new stadium. The rumour is that Lucas was trying to push his own takeover of Leeds United but was bumped off. James Stewart Absolutely spot on Between the Lines You forgot to mention that Norwich are in division 2 RContini I’m an Italian Leeds fan and can offer a perspective from both sides. To clarify, I’m an Italian who was brought up in Leeds and have always supported the club as well as following Italian football. Cellino has been known to me from his 22 years at Cagliari so I will offer my thoughts. I can understand the concerns of many of you considering the way this has all gone down which was shocking in many respects, we all want to avoid further ridicule from the football world and I can see why this takeover looks like trouble to most people. However I do think it has been over sensationalised and I can assure you that on the scale of football owners he is fairly tame. His misdemeanours have normally been for the good of the team and often driven by defiance of the ludicrous beurocracy and red tape that is smothering Italian football. When I look around the premiership owners I can spot people who have had people ‘disappear’ to acheive their ends, so maybe a little perspective is in order. Also it should be considered that Italian owners are used to operating autocratically and it is also common practice for a new owner to immediatley fire the coach and bring in his own guy, especially when the club had been in such poor form and playing such terrible football. I’m sure that as soon as GFH told him he had a deal he took that as a sign to get the ball rolling. Where he went wrong is the timing and execution. His track record with Cagliari really isn’t bad either. Considering the size of the town (and lack of facilities) it has overacheived by spending as much time in Serie A as it has, he may not have spent money like the bigger Italian sides but he has still brought in some excellent players over the years and produced a few home grown ones as well. From people like Zola and Dely Valdes who excelled serie A in the glory days to on a smaller scale the likes of Naingolan, Matri and Astori recently. His record of picking coaches is quite good as well, the problems obviously is that he has a patience issue and sacks far too many. His best recent find was Max allegri. He has always felt like a football man to me, he just wants to win and I honestly beleive he’s in it for glory (both ours and his) and not profit. The players would be better, the manager would be better, the directors of football would be better, we will own our ground and training complex. We would have owners who have been running a football club since before the premier league began. Owners with the balls to stand up for themselves and put their money where their mouth is. Under the other bid, or staying with GFH we will not. we will still be exactly where we are next year and each to come, we will be run by novices who can’t agree on anything because there are too many cooks spoiling the broth, with no money who may well have local connections and the best intentions but ultimatley have no balls and will cower away when things get tough. Even if we got promoted we’d be straight back down after a humilating season of drubbings. I for one would be prepared to take this gamble, lets face it, how could it be any worse than it already has been? Dfooster Well said TSS Quite compelling. The events of Friday night suggests he’s far too trigger-happy to create any level of stability and I’ve spoke a lot with other Cagliari fans who describe a man much like Ken Bates, but it’s interesting to hear an alternative view amid all this outrage. MOT. RContini It depends on which Cagliari fans you spoke to, the more realistic ones would say that in the current Italian financial climate he is doing well to keep the club in Serie A and more importantly solvent by selling the odd player. Most of the sales we are talking about were to much bigger clubs where the player demanded to go and he at least gets a good price when he does. eg Matri to Juventus for a total of E18m, not like say (Snoddy to Norwich for £3m) Cagliari’s turnover in Serie A is similar to ours in the championship! and they have no stadium (or not much of one at least) and this is not Cellinos fault, the team even had to play on the road up to 800km away at some point, yet they still didn’t get relegated. They are competing with giants who literally have millions of fans domestically alone. I’d be pleased if my club performed that well in those conditions. Some Cagliari fans cling on to their Scudetto of 1970 and think they are entitled to be challengers but this is a bit deluded. Classic12 Sincerely yours, Chris Farnell, Esq. Irving08 Good to get a balanced view. And if he gets suckling pig on the pre-match Pavilion menu, he could have fans eating out of more than his hand. Between the Lines Just researched Cellino’s record in Serie A since 2004-2005 season, bear in mind he is probably managing the side as he only employs coaches that he can sack when things go wrong, his record is an eye opener in 364 matches their record reads – Won 103, Drew 112 , Lost 149, that is a win rate of just 28.29% and not once in ten seasons managing to win more games that they lost. Highest position in a 20 team league was 9th (2008-09 season)and even then they were 15 points off 4th place, Doesn’t really compare with Brian McDermotts win rate of 41.45% and he’s achieved that in 10 months with very little money. Are there fans who still want Cellino to buy the club? RContini This record is actually pretty good for a club the size of Cagliari, which I must stress is a small town with a small fanbase and no stadium. they have produced some competetive teams despite this and been in Serie A more years than not under his tenure. If Milan hadn’t taken away Max Allegri and Juve taken Alessandro Matri they would have looked a lot better in the last few years. For those who say he he just wants to make profits on players should look at how he resisted bids for Radja Naingolan for so long under huge pressure from the big 3 clubs and only let him go in the end because it would be unfair to keep him at a club with no stadium. Bear in mind you are taking results since 2004 when the has been a pretty massive financial collapse in Italy since then, we think we’ve had it bad here in the uk but its nothing compared to over there and it has made it much more difficult for the smaller teams to close the gap to the giants. Dfooster Compare that record against a bottom half of the premier league side, like say a Fulham or a west brom and then get back to me. Matthew I’ll take anyone who will run the club properly, pay off the debts, and give McDermott a fair chance. I would genuinely give Cellino a chance if he at least kept McDermott till the end of the season and evaluated things, possibly keeping him on and seeing how we do the following season with some cash injected into the club for players. Dermot Mc Neill Let the fans buy the club and then we can all march on together. TSS I used to think that idea was insane because Leeds fans never agree on anything, but given the kind of owners we seem to attract, it has to be an improvement? Wayne Wellwood Bates will only be gone for good if the club is bought by the Cellino family, Flowers n his mates are just men in suits trying to make a quick buck of us again whereas Cellino wants out of Italy, Leeds turnover is about the same as Cagliari but if he was to take us back to the promised land of the premier league Leeds turnover would double at least… He has money to burn and ambition, So he sacks managers they all do! He will take us back up and turns into challengers again. McDermott is a nice bloke and a good manager but why have you all forgotten how bad we where before the Huddersfield game? He was being slagged left right and centre for all his supposed bad signings, People even talked about a change. Cellino saw the form, had the reports off his mate Festa and once he thought he had the club he did what he thought we wanted and sacked the manager. If you want to stay where we are and continue to sing songs about teams above us then keep shouting for Flowers and his crew of suits and the shadow of Bates will still hang over us through the ground ownership. if you want rid of Bates for good (Cellino will buy the ground) and play the teams we sing about week in week out then I’d suggest taking another look at Cellino, He’s nothing like the lunatic or the Italian version of Ken Bates your nearly all painting him as, Go on the Cagliari websites and the Italian football sites and you will get a different story of a guy who doesn’t take shit of anyone (even his corrupt local council) He hates failure and loves the limelight… Think about it. Wayne Wellwood Vote it down all you want, The fact is Flowers and his mates spat out the dummy and pulled sponsorship after the first takeover attempt feel through (because they didnt have the money). now they are threatening us with a winding up order whilst trying to push through this merged takeover. They are just gonna cream us for a few years line Ken’s pocket through ground rent and sell us to the highest bidder… And your turning away an experienced football man who is loved and respected by his Cagliari fans? Utter madness. Ev It would appear that the debt leeds have and the upcoming payment was the reason he reduced his offer. In a way its understandable Wayne Wellwood Maybe so but why threaten the club he say’s he loves? He’s obviously a suit after a quick buck with his mates, they’ve had to club together to put an offer in again so obviously they wouldn’t have the money to buy the ground or offering much in the way of transfer funds would they? So why bother? quick buck and flog us on in 2-3 years i presume. Ev Leverage for the renewed takeover. Flowers has already pumped money into our club without even owning it. Also its a lot of money we are talking about, why should he simply forget about it >>?? He has a right to ask for it back Wayne Wellwood either way he will get it back, So why drag the club into the news again and threaten court action? Ev Wayne I just explained that…….leverage mate TSS Trouble is, Leeds United also accepted a loan from Cellino for £1.5m (as revealed by Phil Hay earlier today) so it balances it out. Ev I guess theres nothing we can do now mate is there…….its out of our hands. I have absolutely no idea where this will go next. If Cellino comes in ill be gutted because I see lots of problems, culture clashes and the destruction of an ideal to be replaced by something else, something good ?? Maybe, maybe not. Cellino for me is 50 / 50. If he turns out to be KEN BATES 2 in a few years then that will be it for me, time to find a new hobby. Im not going to have another 8 years of that rubbish. Leeds is an addiction but for 10 years its been almost constant misery and frustration. Dfooster Difference is ken bates was a crook with no money. This guy is minted which means we will only get better players in. And for the record I don’t agree cellino is as bad as ken bates. Eccentric? Yes. Fires from the hip? Most likely. Another underneath crook who alienates anyone and anything positive who builds executive boxes when the club is on its knees? No I don’t think so. We’ve got off on the wrong foot with this guy but we need to take a step back read how much debt the club is in look at the alternatives and then weigh up that against what the people in Italy are saying about him. Wayne Wellwood I know what leverage means but my point is if he loved the club as much as he’d like us all to believe then he wouldn’t have even considered it. BigBob Surely they should have known this before due diligence … David Haigh, the clubs chairman was part of this consortium, how, I repeat, how could he not know the size of debt and upcoming payment, he was in charge, looks more like a case of .. “think we can pull a fast one, oh shit its backfired” lets blame someone, anyone, that Cellino must be al qaeda, he’s done bad things … looks silly don’t it BigBob Has everyone sleepwalked through the last 10-12 years of being a Leeds United Fan. If so lets recap … Peter Risdale, lived the dream and what a ride but it ended in tears cos he/the club never had the funds to sustain such lavish spending, so a consortium led by Mr Krasner next, again no money, so asset strip the club and then sold to Mr Bates, his plan, take the club into administration and buy it straight back out, whipping out a large percentage of monies owed, take a total of 25 points in deductions, take us to league one, then slowly, slowly creep back up a league, selling, Delph, Snodgrass, Hawson, Johnson, Gradel, Beechio along the way to fund the club until the poorest arabs in the world come knocking, they buy the club and despite promising the earth, deliver almost nothing while racking up debts of almost 1 million pound a month … One of their Directors, Mr Haigh with the help of some friends then go for a management buyout, they then waste the next two months before deciding they can’t really afford to buy! Enter Italian stage right… Im a billionaire, can buy the club, invest in the team, buy back the ground and training ground, I might want to get rid of a really nice guy in BD, but he has lost 7 of his last eight in charge, including humiliating results against Rochdale and Wednesday, that might upset one or two but it’d probably do for most managers these days so Im sure the fans will understand! Everyone spits their dummys out, Mr Flowers, the man with “only Leeds best interest at heart”, pulls his sponsorship to increase the pressure on the clubs finances and demands money loaned back immediately, Mr Haigh scrambles round, jumping into bed with anyone who’ll have him and an ex manchester united director and a man called Riley become a better option … How’s this lot better than a near billionaire Italian that may have bent a few more rules than most of us, but most of the really rich people out there have too! I don’t for one minute think Mr Cellino’s a saint, but I can’t help think he’s the only realistic option, I sick to death of yeovil and the like, I want the Man U’s and City’s, Liverpool’s and Chelsea’s .. dont you? FInally instead of singing “lets go F’in mental” lets sing “we are F’in metal” cos we must be putting up with this! TSS “deliver almost nothing while racking up debts of almost 1 million pound a month” – In fairness, that was Bates. All the debt and losses come down to his negligible ownership, he mortgaged away season ticket sales that still hurts us now along with catering rights and everything else while he cashed in and shipped out. The only difference between GFH and Bates is the former haven’t sold players to balance the books. “I’m a billionaire” – Is he though? Estimates of his wealth vary wildly. People seem to have jumped to that conclusion and I’ve yet to see concrete evidence suggesting his wealth tops £100m in assets, never mind £1bn. He doesn’t appear on Forbes rich list so I think a lot of estimates are well wide of the mark. As for Flowers, it’s a stalling tactic to get his bid to the table. Wouldn’t worry about that too much. BigBob Flowers had a bid on the table, two months down the line they couldn’t deliver it, sorry, but thats how it looks, can his band of merry men, sustain and grow the club? can they buy back the ground to take away those crippling rent payments? .. Why are the only things we hear “we have LU’s best interest at heart” why has no-one heard their plans for the future of the club … the consortium may consist of 5 or 6 wealthy men, but thats 5 or 6 men that’ll want a “feed” from the teat! … It looks like another “lets buy leeds, get to the premiership as cheaply as possible, and then cash in” scheme to me. I hope Im wrong, but I’ve lost all faith in Mr Haigh and if he’s in, Im out! … (not that I could afford to be in, but you know what I mean) TSS While there are genuine questions to answer with regards to the funds this consortium have at their disposal, people expecting Cellino to spend big may be in for a bit of a shock – he never has at Cagliari. In fact, his modus operandi so closely mimics Bates’ you’d struggle to tell them apart. Neither ideal, but are we really willing to sell our souls to someone who seems a lot like the Italian Ken Bates? Wayne Wellwood Nothing like bates, Cagliari are a small club who have over achieved for years, He built a brand new training ground for the club and a huge sporting complex, Cagliari fans love him for standing up to the council who own the stadium and spent nothing on it exactly the same now as when England played in it during italia 90 but they where happy to rip the fans off with excessive over charging for everything from parking to tickets. This Ken Bates obsession needs to stop, some of your really need to stop thinking about him. Instead of assuming everyone who speaks up for the Cellino’s is some kind of relative to him or Ken Bate’s mate. Listen to what the Italian football people are saying that’s what we care about football. All the rest is just Italian politics and I don’t know about you but I’m not too up on it expect to say it’s seriously corrupt. TSS We are listening to the Italian football people and there are many more who describe this guy as being exactly like Ken Bates than there are suggesting he’ll be good for LUFC. “Cagliari fans love him” – not really, he’s a very divisive figure. Plenty of Leeds fans liked Bates so to really gauge that, it’d be difficult. It’s not Italian politics when he’s defrauding the EU of millions, but his convictions don’t bother me as much as his megalomania does. This is a guy who’ll go through coaches (not managers, he doesn’t hire those) every six month because he expects to be central to team affairs, he basically wants to manage the club himself. Banning supporters from the ground for voicing their outrage at the way he was running things is all too familiar too. How can people not draw comparisons? Does it not alarm you that people like David Conn (who was right all along about Bates) is warning Leeds United against this guy? That other clubs snubbed his money because they didn’t trust him? The events of Friday? People seem to be trying to convince themselves we’re getting a billionaire owner (which there’s no proof of) who’ll bankroll our return to the Prem (which there’s no indication of either), all while ignoring the warning signs. I know we’ve been in the gutter for some years now, but let’s not be too hasty to jump at this guys cash. TSS You should read a few opinions from the Cagliari fans here – https://twitter.com/Quellidelsito/status/430756135118049280 Wayne Wellwood Well shock horror they don’t all love him just like we didn’t all like wise but some did or warnock but some did or even papa smurf (although I don’t know many who liked him). He’s not everyone’s cup of tea but your missing the whole point its about football. It’s about Leeds being back in the premier league where we belong and no matter how much money Flowers and his ex scum director buddy and friends find done the back of the sofa it will never be enough to buy the ground and pay off the debts and bank roll promotion so why bother? Take a chance with Cellino and it just might happen. TSS Taking a chance on someone who caused the chaos of Friday seems like a bad idea to me, but we’re never going to agree here. I just think fans are jumping at his supposed wealth and ignoring the fact he’s never spent of it on Cagliari. Why expect him to be different at Leeds? Terrible examples by the way, Wise, Warnock and Bates were all justifiably hated in the end. Wayne Wellwood You used Bates! In the comment I was answering. ANd they where all liked at some point with the exception of Bates obviously although as you said some did. BigBob Didn’t Flowers and Co. indirectly cause Fridays chaos on Thursday by coming out with “sorry cant afford it” allowing Cellino a foot in the door in the first place, then added to it on Friday with “I’m withdrawing shirt sponsorship” topping it off Tuesday with “I’m winding you up, if I can’t have you no-one can but I love you so much and have your best interest at heart … It’s all about how you want to portray something or somebody BigBob Im agreeing with all your saying … the point we’re getting to is this, come we afford or stomach another Bates, of course not, that’d be madness, but can we afford another Krasner, GFH, because I’m see nothing in that either, and nether will come with a guarantee … I just cant see how anyone wants to spend 25million plus and not protect and increase the value of that asset. Dr Zen It’s a question of which is the lesser of two evils as far as I can see. If, and it’s not a small if, Cellino did buy back the stadium and did put money into the club, at least enough to set it straight so that worst case, we are still shit but are swimming not drowning, does that outweigh that he’s a clown and we’ll be a circus? He doesn’t want managers. He wants coaches. And we’re not used to that. He really doesn’t spend tons of money on Cagliari’s squad but yes, they have stayed alive through all sorts of shenanigans. So it’s a mixed bag. But the Flowers consortium is quite likely to be another in a long line of people who don’t fix the problems Leeds has. I don’t think it’s true they lacked money. I think the truth is they wanted to pay less because their due diligence on Leeds showed it wasn’t actually worth the asking price. I don’t think they’re quite as unreasonable as they’re being made out to be. But will they put in the backing that has been lacking? Will they buy the ground? Will they get us in the black, make us a buying club not a selling club? These are all maybes. I think I’d be happier with Flowers and crew. I don’t think they’re quite the chancers that GFH clearly are and I don’t think they are Bates level by a long chalk. They don’t have much romance, but I’ll be honest with you, I would like to see us recognise that no, right now we are not a big club. We are a “fallen giant” if you like but we are pretty humble. But we need a whole lot less drama. We really need a steady period in which we grow and if Flowers gives us that, I much prefer it to rolling the dice with Coco Cellino. Wayne Wellwood He did have £100 million when he tried to buy West Ham in 2010, What are we costing £25 million? And I also read a report from 2010 on a West Ham forum that his business in Italy turns over around 180 million Euro’s a year ( He’s known as the King of Corn) and it has been going since it was setup by his father some 70 years ago… I’d suggest he’s richer than a few chairman in the Premier league at least, Simple maths suggest that. TSS Turnover means nothing. Leeds United turns over £35m+ a year, none of it is profit. There are companies who turnover billions and don’t make a penny. With West Ham he could feasibly have taken out a £100m loan against his business to fund the takeover, or maybe he nets £1-2m a year from his corn business and has built up a £100m cash fortune, but there’s nothing that suggests he’s a billionaire. There’s even less to suggest he’ll actually spend money, he never has at Cagliari, so even if he is richer than most Premier League chairmen, LUFC aren’t going to see the benefit of that. Wayne Wellwood That’s it assume the worst, Are we that fucked off with all the shit that’s gone on over the last 10 years that’s where we are right now? He didn’t own the ground at Cagliari it’s the same ground we played in with England during Italia 90 so why spend big? The council where ripping off the fans so he built a temporary stadium which the council then shut for safety reasons so then he took the team to trieste the most northern part of Italy to play homes games no home fans just away fans so the council got no more money… They weren’t happy about that so out came charges for embezzlement relating to the stadium he built. The information is freely available on the internet you’ve just got to wade through page after page of nonsense about him first. As for the loan comment you really need to do more research. here read this, I have more if you need em. Vast wealth. http://managerbiography.altervista.org/biography-of-massimo-cellino/ BigBob Thanks Wayne, youve proved the internet can make everyone look as good or as bad as you want them to look … like I’ve tried to say above Cellino may be bad new, but he may not, the proofs in the pudding …. same goes for Flowers/Farnham/Haigh .. flip your coin!!! Wayne Wellwood It seems you’ve made up your mind TSS, and bob I love Leeds, carl shutt debut hat trick v shrewsbury I think it was my first ever game, Why sell to a guy who threatens the club twice in a week and his ex scum director friend and Adam pearson who all along has said he has no interest in football since he bought Hull? They have no money we will be back at square one with bates still owning the ground. Cellino isn’t the best of options granted but that risk could reap huge rewards. BigBob Wayne … Agreed, never sound ideal, and I must be a bit older (so should know better)first game, Ian Bairn scored away at Grimsby, disallowed for offside, and we’re jumping round like idiots in the home end … ooops TSS That’s a dreadfully written article. I’d like one with an actual figure, “vast wealth” is incredibly vague and has no place in the kind of article he’s attempting to write. Vast wealth relative to who exactly? Me? Bill Gates? It’s a nonsense term. It worries me that concrete information on this guy seems so incredibly hard to come, that’s rarely a good sign. But his wealth isn’t the only issue, it’s the chaos he brings with him that’s the real off-putting factor for me. Wayne Wellwood It’s translated from Italian that’s why it reads so dreadfully as for figures they are very hard to find as you already know. But even the people who are calling him left right and centre admit he is vastly wealthy and by vast I mean Hundreds of millions if not billions. For the last 10 years we’ve all prayed for this to happen and now it has you’ve all decided McDermott’s the new Revie and we are happy playing Yeovil… Madness take a chance what could happen that hasn’t already? John Drake We could have another situation like Bates. John Drake Are you a relative? Dr Zen This is so true. Even if he has a net worth of 100m that doesn’t actually mean he has 100m he can spend on a football club. Danimal Holland We can only blame the manager so much, the team was seriously under performing, they’ve admitted so themselves. Saturday’s win was BMD’s win, his squad, his tactics. The appearence of a squad-wide backbone can possibly be explained by a shift in attitude, BMD appeared to be sacked, the players identified it was the team that was at fault and set out to finally prove themselves. And if that doesn’t convince you, compare BMD and Festa’s managerial track record, speaks for itself. I don’t trust Cellino, he fully intended to replace BMD with Festa, then replace Festa with god knows who else another 9 months down the line. Ev BoB “Has everyone sleepwalked through the last 10-12 years of being a Leeds United Fan” I would suggest those that want Mr Cellino have YES………the 8 years worth of lessons learnt off Ken Bates have been forgotten ? BigBob Ev … no not forgotten and not for one minute am I saying Cellino is the be all and end all, he’s probable not, but I cant see how Flowers and co are ever, when push came to shove the money wasn’t there to buy the club a week ago, so whats changed, it’s hardly loose change found from the back of a sofa! and with Mr “ill jump in bed with everyone” Haigh, in not convinced, this mans been involved for a year and still didn’t know about the skeletons DD found … It’s a toss of a coin really heads you lose, but tail you probably lose too! take you pick buddy Ev The reality that fans are ignoring is what happens to the staff and team…….. I love Brian McDermott, yes I think hes struggled at times but hes young and he will learn. Hes intelligent and hes developed a rare bond with the fans. So I want him at my club. With this Italian that’s obviously going to be ripped up…. then theres the team and the youth players…….. This isn’t a risk its a certainty. Decisions will be made that we will not like and I ask if the positive really out weigh the negatives ?? For me they do not. Not even close. Id rather take the slow train and genuinely LOVE my club rather than the insanity that would ensure under Cellino John Drake BMcD’s not THAT young. Fifty if he’s a day. Fed up Fan Cellino in for me he’s got bags of cash and for what ive read it sounds like 20 years worth of wrangles and disputes with the mayor and local politions has gotten to him and he wants a new challenge. consortiums etc means too many fingers in the pie wanting a piece aint that why pubs are closing brewery owns them,company buys the lease, someone takes on a. Few leases and gets some one manages it who in turn hires staff to work. Kithkanan Everywhere online Leeds fans arguing over which bid is the best, abusing each other, even on twatter……….so much for marching on together. Anyway anyone who thinks Cellino’s is a good bid is a xxxxer Sorry felt left out RoystonLUFC eek, winding up order served on us: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/26038937 TSS Stalling tactic (and it’s not a winding-up order but a winding-up petition). It’ll never make it to court, don’t worry. RoystonLUFC phew! Matthew Nothing overly to be concerned with. If the Italian buys us, the debt will likely be paid before it comes to that, if the Consortium wins the day, Flowers will likely write it off. Kithkanan I cant believe Farnell is going to be our CEO……that’s worth a riot right there…… BigBob Get the Chelsea out of Leeds, we want ManUr in please!!! Bluesman You could not make this up! The whole situation is a farce and the problem is that the board and the bidders are all being messed about big style! Talk about being unprofessional. I feel very sorry for all of them and us. Will tell you why? GFH obviously could not afford Leeds in the first place. That is why we are supposedly running at a loss. It can’t be the infrastructure costs, so it must be the other debts liabilities that are owed. So, now we have a split inGFH camp. Those who want to sell to Cellino for greedy money and those who want a consortium of business people who fit the culture of Leeds United and the community. So, David Haigh and Andrew Flowers put time and money into the takeover Substantial money and commitment. Then along comes Cellino and the fraction of GFH wants him. There then appears to be infighting at ER. The manager is sacked Haigh resigns, the fans ‘kick off’ and everyone is reinstated or returns to the office. In the meantime all of the potential purchasers are under fire and having their reputations dragged through the mud! Still no decision on ownership though, lol. What a way for a bank to do its business. Poor DH, poor AF, poor Cellino! I intend to stand behind Leeds no matter who wins this contest, because God they will deserve it! I am absolutely convinced the consortium have the skills and experience to make Leeds successful. I think that Cellino could be successful if he gets good people in and let’s them do the job. For Cellino the difficulty will be fitting in, but he is shrewd and perhaps he could change. Finally, we have poor old loyal BM Zander the team, who are between a rock and a hard place. Let’s hope tha this story has an happy ending! BigBob “I intend to stand behind Leeds no matter who wins this contest, because God they will deserve it!” … well said sir … Good read and you’ve a “How to Run a Football Club” reality TV script here mrbigwheels The split Bluesman is absolute. Friday was a classic rather than a class act caused entirely by ‘the split’. Mr Chairman is with Cellino and DH/Patel in the other camp. Personally cannot see how DH can be part of a prospective takeover and be day to day MD of Leeds United. Impartiality with the best interests of the Club should be his only mindset. Where is Paul Hunt?, the only man at Leeds with extensive football business management experience… Cellino possibly thought he had bought the Club and set about the job in his autocratic way… rightly or wrongly. If the Chairman of the Club told him ”congratulations, the club is yours”, last friday lunchtime…. according to Simon Austins radio interview, then it means just that. Bit like getting the keys to your new house… you’re not going to stand outside all day… Total cock up from the owners caused by infighting, imo. Kithkanan Cellino is a convicted criminal Leeds fans – “yes but hes got money though” Cellino manipulates and lies Leeds fans – “yes but hes got money though” Cellino interferes with the team Leeds fans – “yes but hes got money though” Cellino treats fans like morons Leeds fans – “yes but hes got money though” Cellino just like Ken Bates has a fish finger factory Leeds fans – “yes but hes got money though” Cellino is a distant relation of Mussolini Leeds fans – “yes but hes got money though” Cellino is a closet Manchester United Fan Leeds fans ” hmmm go to hell Cellino” BigBob Lol Lol Lol … if only a squeaky clear, whiter than white, paid all his dues, really nice guy russian billionaire would come knocking at the door!!! Kithkanan Someone needs to scam Bill Gates into buying Leeds United……..now you got me thinking…….. BigBob He does loads for charity, does he do basket cases too???? Kithkanan Lets forget scamming Bill Gates, I sat and really thought about it and im very certain thousands of fat Nigerians have already tried. Those are probably the charities you spoke of, Bill didn’t realise he was helping thousands of blokes in Nigeria. Got a heart of god has Bill……………… Kithkanan Bill for godsakes give us some money ? 200 million is a pittance to you ! I mean you wipe your ass on $50 dollar notes, you can spare us some cash !!!??? Ev How about this ; If every Leeds fan joins a Leeds United Syndicate and enters the Euro Millions and the National Lottery………..that amount of lines should reduce the odds. we may jest but we probably would win with a few hundred k then use the 100 million euros to purchase Leeds for the fans BigBob Good luck picking a board of directors from this lot (myself included) most of us could pick a fight in an empty room!!! Kithkanan Hah ! imagine the groans and mass tears if we didnt get the final number during a home game at Elland road though…… ???? Ross would be like “WTFs up I just scored !!??” Ev Could work if the fans put say a quid in every week till you won big, any winnings go into the pot to buy the club. Until the Euro Millions people ban us ofcourse when they found out we have the worlds biggest syndicate……….. Bob – Brian McDermott can run it BigBob I like Brian … but he’d be too nice … need a ruthless, horrible bastard who’d take no shite for that job … Cellino anyone .. lol Bluesman Bates will return as the pasta man! Same methods, but more money not to spend on Leeds. Taken 8 years to get rid of Bates, pasta man would take us 30,! The consortium will get us back with their expertise and branding. BigBob How do you know???? Just asking Bluesman Because they are good, because they know how to build a huge brand, the have all got the T shirt. Because they understand the fans, they understand our great culture, they understand football snd they know the Premier League. They are good guys, they will lead us properly and professionally and build on the good work that DH has started. Because the promised land is calling for Leeds United! John Drake Little bit vague on details there, Bluesman. Because they are ‘good’, and are ‘good guys’ etc. I need a bit more qualification than that. Fed up fan I dont know how cellino would asset strip leeds all the assets have been stripped. The only way he will make money for his own pockets is to buy everything back to stop paying out large sums in rent . . . . gfh are still part owners in this so would they just be a sleeping partner? Money isnt an issue to him and the moneys in the premier league. So he would have to build a team to get there and sustain it. He’s loved by calgiari fans and has tried his best but italian red tape and run ins with the mayor have obviously given him some enthusiasm to take up interests elsewhere LUFC Ev I would guess he would buy a few players at first, try to get us promoted (whilst interfering in the first team), so I think he would need his own team to do it the Cellino way, god knows who we would be left with and what carnage would be caused by all the changes hed make…….. Brian gone and god know what players would survive. I would suggest only Ross is guaranteed at this stage and only if he doesn’t alienate Cellino….. Where as RIGHT now, the team seems to have taken a massive step forward without Cellinos help and it would be a shame to see that potential momentum wrecked. Wayne Wellwood We hadnt won since the 14th of December and had been knocked out the cup by shitty Rochdale and you see a win against a struggling Huddersfield side who could have been 3 up at half time as potential momentum? The 2nd half performance was amazing but that one result is far from potential momentum in my humble opinion. I hope Cellino buys Leeds and takes us back up because that bunch of suits wont have the money for that never mind the ground we still pay uncle ken rent for. although he denies owning it he obviously does under the company name Teak Commercial Limited, a firm based in the British Virgin Islands. strangely enough set up in the same month and year as when uncle ken first grabbed our club. Cellino buys the ground thats bates out simple, Thats me stick a fork in I’m done. Whatever happens We are still all Leeds. MOT. Ev The two wingers have started to settle in….. did you see the last game. Admittedly we are weak defensively but the team is starting to take shape. Murphey is playing better and so is Byram….. Well you have your opinion, TSS has his and everyone has theres, we will see wont we. It looks like Cellino has got Leeds United. So god help us WAYNE I really really hope your right but I have my doubts ! Wayne Wellwood Kebe is proven class at this level so he was always gonna settle in I think stewarts a bit lightweight myself but he’s young and should improve as he showed in the 2nd half against Town, I like Mcdermott as a person as we all do but we where awful for weeks before and after his signings arrived, I hope whoever comes in gives Brian a chance but as we all know its a results business so we’d have to continue to improve. As for people who are saying he’s building something do you really think our squad is strong enough to stay in the premier league without massive financial investment? Again I see only one way we can achieve any of that and that getting behind Cellino and remembering business men are in business to make money not throw it away and as the premier league is the richest league in the world thats where he wants to do business. All my opinion from info i’ve gathered in the last couple of weeks and when he was after the hammers back in 2010. Ev lol if we got into the premier league wed get a 50 mill pay day, then its about soending that wisely. I agree that if you try to replace too many players they wont all settle, that’s why you need good young players who can adapt when we go up. Byram & Mowatt are key. Ross would make the step up no problem but we would need atleast 4 more very high quality players for the first team. Yes we need to be building now but I don’t think that’s sufficient for us to have the wrong owner. The damage another Bates could do is far worse than potential relegation or lack of promotion. that’s what you guys don’t want to see isn’t it. Wayne Wellwood Again with the Bates obsession. And how could we possibly get into a worse position than we are right now? We are skint GFH have no money to pay bills they have to find money for bates’s stadium shortly too and now we know they owe haigh n friends 6 million and Cellino 1.5 how could it get worse? TSS From what the financial boffins tell me, it’s not a case of GFH being out of money, they’re just trying to maximise ROI by not spending any of their own on club while attempting to sell club. Basically, it’s better (for them) to load debt onto Leeds United than spend money themselves because they’re only going to sell the club shortly no matter what. Debt is factored into price of course, but when you have two parties in a bidding war, both of whom are lending you said funds, I guess it’s a bit different. Wayne Wellwood I just hope more people they’ve sponged off don’t start crawling out the woodwork, That could really muddy the waters. TSS If you add up the bits we know about, which includes a few million mortgaged against ST sales, loans from current owners, David Haigh, Flowers and Cellino, by my reckoning, we must owe at least £15m. I suppose it’s a false figure though because current owners debt wouldn’t really count until they exit the holding, Haigh’s and Flower’s will be tied in within their own bid and Cellino’s in with his. Does make for an incredibly bizarre situation though, GFH have played both sides badly. Wayne Wellwood I’d go as far to say they have made an almighty cock up of the takeover process, playing both sides off against each other releasing statements then editing them instantly… Shambolic. David Cellino the asset stripper. Those that say there are no assets at Leeds forget Byram and Ross that’s around £12m for a start! BigBob So you pay 25 million plus with the view of clawing back a quick 10-12, the blokes a genius … wonder if he fancies his chances as a tory MP too? Ev Ken Bates didn’t asset strip at first, again for him there was nothing to strip until we had decent players to sell on for a profit. I think with Cellino the problem wont be him trying to shaft the club, I think it will be the mayhem he will cause through his own arrogance and bizarre decision making. Ofcourse that’s ignoring the fact that Our owner will be a convicted criminal. You saw evidence of this last week with how badly he handled his first interaction with the club. Like a Bull in a china shop and it fitted everything that Flowers had warned us about a few days before. He does not understand the Club, has no empathy for its traditions and does NOT understand the fans. That was all proven on Friday. First score to Flowers. Wayne Wellwood Idiotic comment David, Would you be made up if you lost a 20 and found a 5er? he has numerous quotes of “Italian entrepreneur” against his name along with “highly successful business man” £25 million plus for a return of what £12 million? hardly great business, Great business would be £25 million spent and the club ending up worth £100 million plus if we reach the Premier League and stay in it. Dfooster Whoever suggested cellino would asset strip leeds United is coming at this from the completely wrong angle. LEEDSSSS Cagliari fans seem pretty passive from what I’ve read about them. Think Cellino however got a taste of what can happen if he messes with Leeds fans. Wayne Wellwood Just when you think its safe to check twitter… What are GFH doing? Our names being dragged through the mud by these jokers. It’s like kids fighting over the best toy in the house. JohnB It’s amazing how fickle Leeds fans are, on Friday it’s Out with Cellino and “Oh Brian McDermott !” , Henry Winter is doing rousing speeches on sky about how steadfast the fans support of Brian is … and even Brian describes the fans as “class” Then Cellino flashes a few wads, the family brain cell starts ticking over and… Suddenly it’s ” so long Brian and thanks for everything” Leeds fans are singing ” Oh Massimo Cellino” instead! Yes Leeds fans are “class” Aslong as you have got the money ! Not sure I want to be associated with this and I’m pretty sure I would be one of many if this was the 70s rather than 2014! People have changed! Dfooster It’s not that it’s just some Leeds fans with a little bit of business knowledge can see the car crash coming if we go with the other options. And trust me it will come, administration -15 points winding up orders so on and so forth. The club is in a mess and only someone with a freest amount of cash will sort it out. Ev Clubs survive administration, taking the wrong owner on to avoid administration is not the answer. Portsmouth faced liquidation recently so the fans finally got off their backsides and bought the club. Their rise back to the top will take time as they must pay debts off first but it will come and this time no money grabbing idiots will get in the way. ALL the decisions will be for the best of the club and fans. For me the likeliness is Cellino is as bad or worse than Bates and we know how that ended up. It took leeds fans a few years to realise and I think this will be the same. Hero to zero in two years Dfooster Yeah I think we are playing the role of “once bitten twice scorned” here. The Italian guy is colourful for sure but I think some leeds fans are a little bit quick to make comparisons with ken bates when a lot of the situations this guy found himself in are a result of odd legislation and red tape over in Italy. His intentions with Calgary have only ever been one for success if you read his backstory. And currently he’s the only one rich enough to get the monkey off our back that we’ve had for over ten years now. I don’t know about anyone else but I’ve had enough the struggle and debts and people making a quick buck off this club. It’s about time someone came along who is only interested in success and we shouldn’t frighten them away. What happened to BM was bad and not a good start for the Italian but we have to look at our long term future and we don’t have one with anybody else I’m afraid. Ev Mate………….the comparison come from Cellinos history man !!! That’s how most logical decisions are made, based on the evidence available. Hes had a stadium condemned, hes been arrested, called a liar, banned fan groups, frozen out players, choose transfers himself, sacked 35 managers in 20 years…………I mean doesn’t that explain the logical concerns. But you will believe WHAT you want to believe. I have SIMPLY read his bios , noticed the obvious comparison with Ken Bates and that has formed my opinion which is fair enough Dfooster If you have read his bios then you will know he was arrested because someone got electrocuted whilst building that stadium. That’s like how a supermarket manager can get read their rights if trading standards find some rotten food, it’s because someone has to be held responsible when in fact it was probably someone way beneath cellino that wasn’t doing their job correctly. The whole stadium debacle was because Italian authorities greenlit the stadium plans because they thought Italy were going to get the European cup which went to France and then they said it was too near to the airport and closed it down before completion, hardly cellinos fault. None of the above is anywhere near in the same league as ken bates who was fraudulent to say the very least. It’s all there on the net about cellino it only requires reading and understanding Wayne Wellwood They don’t seem to want to listen dfooster they’ve made up their minds, He’s Italian Bates because he’s rich and the daily mirror and other scare mongering rags said so. It really doesn’t take much research to see that all his previous scrapes with Italian law are because of how littered with corruption and red tape Italian politicians are and always have been. As for his football history that is without question very good, yes he’s sacks managers but as you say who doesn’t these days? Kev That’s exactly what he just said…….do you actually read anyones posts or live inside your own little bubble ? Herbman One area that the pro Cellino supporters haven’t considered is the level of investment in Italy compared with England. The average attendance is Serie A is 22,000′ Calgliari have been bottom for the last 6 or so years with attendances around 9000. Serie B has average attendance of 4000, the same as our second division. So when people say that Cellino has kept Calgliari in Serie A that isn’t that difficult. The top attendances are only around 45000 for Inter and AC. If you look at squad value then most Cagliari players are worth between £400K and £2M, with about 5 players worth up to £7M. So Cellino has not really invested that much. To Maintain the English Premiership you need to be spending tens of millions, no proof that Cellino has ever invested this level. Perhaps we should join Serie A?.. Let’s see what tomorrow brings …… What next? Guerin Sportivo suggests an investment amount of 60 million Euros by Cellino. Not sure where the figure comes from but it seems they intimate this is what was included in the submission to the Football League. Guerin Sportivo also talks about the irony of how Italians protested about foreign investment in their football clubs and now Cellino is getting the same treatment from the English. sydney whites Leeds faces an existential decision. We need heavy investment to take this club forward. This isn’t going to come from stitched up consortiums that have difficulty proving they have sufficient funds to even meet the purchase price. The investment will only come from someone with deep enough pockets and an appetite to take on the risk. That person will want to call the shots. We can stick around the championship feeling good about ourselves or take up the Faustian pact that is required to get back into the premiership. I’d back the money man. PMH Doesn’t look like Mr Money ever spends it on his football team though does it. Let’s find a different devil who will give us a better deal for our soul. Mine’s worth a lot more than he’s offering. what next? Flowers winding up order for the club is the biggest case of spitting the dummy and throwing the toys out of the cot ever seen. The consortium to which Flowers belongs didn’t come up with the cash, as a few of the consortium couldn’t meet the commitment to do so, which makes you wonder if they can’t afford to buy the club then how can they invest in the squad? Then good old Flowers decides if he can;t be successful then he’ll do everything he can to make sure no-one else can. What sort of insurance company lend money to a football club at 7% interest anyway? I say bugger off Flowers! Wayne Wellwood According to the Financial Times the petition was filed on January 29, the day after Sport Capital’s bid fell through… Definitely spat the dummy out and He’s a fan? mrbigwheels You obviously don’t understand why he’s doing it then. TSS Has absolutely nothing to do with recovering the money, it’s a stalling tactic. I forget the name of the paper, but it has to be advertised in a London newspaper so other people owed money can come forward before it’s even official and he hasn’t done that. He’s merely trying to muddy the waters so Cellino deal doesn’t go through, but it all seems a bit futile to be honest with you. Either way, it’ll never come to court. That was never the intention. PMH Money is just not enough. Wish it was. You also need sound judgment and patience. Cellino may have the money but he has not got what is needed to go with it. He wants a new toy, but LUFC is no plaything. Ev The GFH statement on flowers is just a publicity stunt, they knew about his legal action days ago. I think they are softening the fans up for Cellino Sorry GFH but you are not getting out of this with reputation intact lufcboy We have to face facts – Leeds United is haemorrhaging money and GFH want to offload us. SADLY the Haigh & Co consortium don’t seem to have any money therefore, the choice is 1) Administration (again) or 2) Mob money from Cellino. If he keeps his promise to buy back the stadium and training ground is this such a bad choice afterall? Wayne Wellwood mob money… You watch way too many gangster films. Agriculture he made is money in that’s why hes The king of corn. Wayne Wellwood King of Corn can’t see pacino in that role. lufcboy Tongue in cheek – I know he’s the “King of Corn”. Nice thought though – maybe Scar-crow a re-make about a corn dealer. Bucephalus This site and numerous others [Square Ball, LUST] have let the LUFC fans down badly. For too long you ve been too biased, too seduced by Haigh, Flowers, Farnan, etc, and too against Cellino. Ive said from day one he was the only choice. We are ‘Dirty Leeds’ after all – this man should fit right in, should be an icon! Some of the comments ive read from so called fans make me hang my head in shame. If Cellino walks away, and says i dont need this nonesense any longer i wouldnt blame him, then you Haigh, GFH, Farnan, Flowers apologists would get the disaster you deserve. Get a reality check, and welcome a man who wants to spend hard cash on a mess of a club. Matthew My only problem with Cellino was his heavy handed approach with McDermott, had the man given him the chance he deserves, I wouldn’t of had any objections personally. I’ve always been for a single entity owning us, and I hope it will come to that in the future, no consortiums, just one person. One persons agenda is easy to see than each individual group members from a consortium. TSS Again, there’s absolutely no evidence of Cellino being “a man who wants to spend hard cash,” he never has at Cagliari so what makes you think he will at Elland Road? He’s here to line his own pockets, just like any other owner. Wayne Wellwood no evidence, Unlikely, Its cheaper in Italy thats all you keep feeding us whilst at the same time lording up Haigh, Flowers who loves us but obviously thinks if he cant have us know one can and the scum in the mix Farnan… Where is the evidence that they have funds? Because at the moment all they are doing is trying to scrape the money together to buy us never mind all the other money they’d have to find. Wayne Wellwood That’s if you want to be objective obviously, or you can just continue ripping shreds off Cellino and ignoring the fact the British consortium of suits don’t have any money and said as much themselves last week. Mot to mention the spitting of dummy’s pulling of sponsorship’s and winding up orders. and yes I know the orders a bargaining tool now but on the 29th when it was issued it was simply a response to failing finding the money to buy our great club. TSS Do you work for his PR team or something? I aren’t ripping shreds off him, everything I’ve said is based on his history which I researched thoroughly when he became a potential new owner for our football club. Too many fans are summing this up as cash v no cash when you have no evidence Cellino plans to spend and no evidence the consortium has no cash, it’s all guesswork. The only facts we have is history so that’s all we can work off, not what you HOPE Cellino will do because you have absolutely no control over that. It has to come down to football. Pearson and Farnan both have experience running football clubs, as too does Cellino, but the former have done so in England which counts in their favour IMO. Furthermore, Cellino involves himself A LOT in first team affairs to the point where we’d consider him Director Of Football, if not first team manager in England. That worries me, a lot. So too does his quickfire antics and the fact I can’t overlook all this for money A) because money isn’t everything, we’ll get nowhere without proper leadership and B) we have no idea whether Cellino will actually spend any. IF Cellino wants to come in, leave the first team manager to run the football club, spend money to get us promoted and not shut-out any dissenting fans like he did at Cagliari, I’ll give him every chance. But history suggests he won’t and that’s the only basis any of us currently have to form an opinion. And less of this “one-sided” nonsense. Balance for the sake of balance is stupidity. An extreme example but nonetheless valid, let’s say this is the second world war and I’m writing about the Allies versus Germany, would you expect me to publish every “fact” the Nazis were putting out as gospel or challenge them based on their behaviour? TSS No evidence of what? Cellino has profited to the tune of about £20m on transfers at Cagliari, he hasn’t lost a penny on them. That’s verifiable fact, do your homework. He’s also a man who’ll run the first team himself, hiring coaches he can blame when things go wrong. The consortium may have less money, but they’re experienced in English football and won’t try to run the first team themselves. Listen, neither situation is ideal. But there’s a false assumption Leeds fans are making that Cellino has come to bankroll LUFC and there’s absolutely no evidence to back that up from his time at Cagliari, so you’re left with a decision between a wealthy individual (whose net worth stands in the hundreds of millions, not billions BTW – another false fact being thrown around) who there’s no evidence to suggest will invest heavily in the first team, all while trying to take charge of it himself. Or, a presumably less wealthy consortium of football people who’ll let the manager do his job. That’s the decision. This isn’t money vs no money, because Cellino doesn’t spend it and no one really knows how much the consortium has. It comes down to how they’ve managed football club’s in the past and the consortium contains key individuals who’ve been successful in that respect. Cellino too has done well with Cagliari, but he constantly meddles in first team affairs to the point where he’s basically managing the team himself, leaving us with an Italian madman running the first team who can’t possibly be fired or held accountable for poor results. Wayne Wellwood I was talking about you constantly asking for evidence of Cellino’s funds yet at the same time lording up haigh and his mates who have already proved they have none. Hundreds of millions or even billions was what i said yesterday and now you seem to agree with me, Good. If he brings success and premier league football do you really care? I don’t… And before you say that isn’t guaranteed I will add nothing is in football but I think its obvious to everyone we have more of a chance of rising from thew ashes with him at the helm than we have under stewardship of haigh and friends. TSS “Lording up Haigh” again. Where are you getting that from? See above comment for why I prefer consortium. His wealth is a moot point if he doesn’t spend it. You’re using it to demonstrate we’re better off with him, but how exactly? He’s only ever profited from transfers at Cagliari, that’s the only fact of any relevance, anything else is merely wishful thinking. And I know Leeds United fans love to think we’re bigger than everyone else in the world and he’d be mad not to spend, but we’re not. He’s a businessman, he made money from Cagliari and he’ll only do the same at Leeds. Remove money (because there’s no indication Cellino will do anything other than profit from Leeds and we have no idea what amount the consortium has) and let’s concentrate purely on football. The decision is between the likes of Pearson and Farnan who’ve successfully ran football clubs in this country and who won’t interfere with first team affairs, or an Italian guy who’ll become de facto first team manager, meaning he’s impossible to fire and can’t be held accountable for results. That HAS to be the real issue here – the way the football club is run, not who has more money. Bucephalus Seriously -Pearson ‘successful’? He ruined Hull! If you examined him like youve slated Cellino I’d have more respect for your arguement. Youre argueing Cellino isnt very rich, and wont spend it, yet you promote clowns who waste all our’s time and money. The hard cash I mention is for buying the club, while you’re no hopers seem to have a continual free ride. Wayne Wellwood He isn’t loved by the Hull fans, I was going to point that out myself but didn’t fancy having to search the internet for evidence. TSS Depends who you ask, like with any owner I guess, but the Hull fans who criticise Pearson are insane. They’re a tinpot club he dragged from League Two (where they were on the brink of financial ruin) to the Championship. I’m sure he ruffled some feathers along the way, but he left that club in a MUCH stronger position than he found them. He’s worked at Leeds too BTW, helped bring in a lot of the big money Ridsdale went crazy with. Left long before it all went horribly wrong though. Bucephalus So he left ridsdale before it went wrong, and hull before it went wrong….and hull fans are wrong, because basically they are Hull fans. Right…… Incidentally you don’t work for the LMA do you? You’re constant reference to the number of poor managers cellino went through makes me wonder. The day’s of long term managerial reins are over. Ferguson and Wenger are the last of the breed. It’s a fact of modern day football, like it or loath it. I’m sure Cellino has made mistakes – haven’t we all? Would he be better than this confederancy of failed consortium’s? No doubt. Money, good connections, and we should take it as a compliment he wants us – after all if we succeed and he sells us for 60millions I wouldn’t begrudge him. We need to get behind him, cos he’s actually very good at what he does TSS That’s quite the slant you’ve put on it there. He left Leeds in 2001, our finances were very strong at the time, Ridsdale went mental after that. As for Hull, he saved them from certain doom and took them up two divisions before selling them on. How on earth can he be blamed for what followed? They should be building the man a statue. I have no problems with changing manager when the team is under-performing (though it only exasperates the problem because it hands all power to the players and never creates a situation where the manager has the necessary protection he needs), I don’t even care how good or bad the managers Cellino has hired are because it’s largely beside the point – Cellino runs the first team himself, that’s the issue. And you can’t replace the owner when things aren’t going well. Ev awww your angry at nasty Mr TSS for not agreeing with you. This a blog not an official website. Hes entitled to his opinion and if you don’t like it you know what you can do about it… Wayne Wellwood I think he’s trying to point out how one sided the points are on here and that being The Scratching Shed and a favourite place for many a Leeds fan to bring up his or her points then surely the Mod should be a little more objective rather than just asking for constant proof from cellino and lording up haigh and his mates who have already proved they are not swimming in money. TSS I’d love to know where I’ve been “lording up Haigh” as you continue to claim. I’ve done nothing but criticise him over the past few weeks, my support for the consortium is based on the involvement of successful football people like Farnan and Pearson who won’t try and run the first team themselves – like Cellino does. I also think it’s important to address the false assumptions Cellino’s supporters are making – ie. He’s a billionaire who’ll spend money, when in fact, he’s a millionaire who has profited heavily from transfers at Cagliari. I don’t think the consortium are without flaws, I don’t think they’re the ideal owners of Leeds United, I just think they’re a better option than some Italian madman who’ll become de facto first team manager. Wayne Wellwood Just asking for constant evidence of Cellino’s motives or funds is lording up haigh and his mates unless you can show evidence of the consortium’s funds too which even they seem unable to do. I’d prefer someone else to buy us than either party to be honest but out of the two yes more risky with Cellino but he has the knowledge of the game he has the experience of running a club all be it in Italy and he has some money… Or we can continue to be a piggy bank for groups of british business men. If the results go well then BMC will keep his job if not he will go, thats football. Matthew As a long time poster here I can confirm that TSS has never been pro Haigh. If anything he has been openly honest in his opinions of the various regimes that have helmed the club. Wayne Wellwood Well I’m not the only one to have noticed a slight imbalance in his and other fan sites comments, In the end we all want whats best for the club but a slightly more balanced argument would be nice rather than the constant talk of an Italian bates mob man who might not be as rich as we suspect or can prove whilst at the same time ignoring the fact the consortium have already proved they haven’t 2 penny’s to rub together. Football men yes but the right men to sort us out on and off the field? I’m not so sure. Ev You want this guy because hes got money and who he is, what hes done, what hes going to do and his reputation and our reputation be damned. That’s the bottom line. I however don’t support Leeds because of “Money” or based on how much they spend on players. For me its also about HOW we achieve success and what kind of club we are. Its Idealism I guess a romantic out dated notion Wayne Wellwood Yes it is, The proof is in the pudding. Simple fact is foreign owners are the only ones who bring success these days gone are the days a club ran by a local millionaire can compete at the highest level. It’s simply a case of do we want Leeds to continue having Town, wednesday and the like as our rivals or do we want the chance to have city, scum, the scousers and chelsea as our rivals? And I said the chance because thats what it is it isnt guarenteed by any means but it is possible. Ev Wayne ok lets forget the soul of the club and focus on all that matters to you. Money and Transfers ! HE IS NOT ROMAN ABRAMOVICH, I guarantee he will not spend one tenth of what they spend. That’s the first point. Second the evidence at Cagliari suggests he has sold to buy so there is no real proof that he will give you the MONEY! as you so desperately want. As I stated before I think he will spend a bit initially, but then the rot will appear. Wayne Wellwood I never said he was Abramovich you just chose to read my comment as that what I said was “the chance because thats what it is, it isnt guarenteed by any means but it is possible”. So please stop trying to make me out as a non caring money lover, my point is still valid, Foreign owners are the only owners currently having success in the premier league. As for your guarantee you like the rest of us are just guessing at what could happen. mrbigwheels All I know Sir is…. this is going to be about survival of the Club and nothing else for quite some time. A challenge for all present prospects trying to buy the Club. Only when a man with £50m minimum wad to play around with will LUFC clime into the PL and have a chance of staying there… There is no one of that ilk presently at the table… imo. Matthew He’s entitled to be suspicious of the man, considering his history. All that matters really is getting rid of the total and utter clusterfuck known as GFH. Wayne Wellwood His history is to do with the seriously corrupt state of Italian politics not football his football history is of being one of the most successful owners in Italy running a small club for 20 years whilst constantly over achieving that can’t be argued and a man who has served as vice-president for Serie A and is still a member of the Serie A council. None of those points can be argued. At the end of the day its football we are interested in… Nothing else. TSS Not strictly true. One of his charges was for defrauding the EU, not Italy. The other one is open to debate though, it centres on the stadium he built and a dispute with a local airport. Ultimately, he knew he was being dodgy but thought he’d found a loophole to exploit. Under the circumstances of Italy’s bizarre red tape policies, I wouldn’t hold that one against him. He just seemed desperate to get the stadium built after they’d closed down large sections of Cagliari’s ground, which is understandable when the alternative is football 500 miles away from home town and crowds of 3000. Ev TSS stated his opinions during the Bates ownership in fact he was one of the only blogs to really make a stand if I remember correctly. Years later the rest of the leeds fan base caught up. Therefore its important that these blogs carry on being opinionated so that the Leeds fans get a fair cross section of opinion. My statement stands, you are just upset that he doesn’t agree with you. You spent all night last night arguing your cause and didn’t listen to any reasonable counter arguments. You are therefore not being objective either. mrbigwheels Suggest … read Football Italia, courtesy of NewsNow… listed now, for an opinion. Wayne Wellwood Just read it, A good read and another reason to start thinking about Cellino differently. BigBob OK, thats try another angle for all the people on here who are anti Cellino without even giving the bloke a chance. In the last 10 years, how many of what some would call “suitable suitors” ie. whiter than white, squeaky clean, no skelly’s in the closet have been queuing up to buy Leeds United … answer “NONE” Why not? … lets see … no ground, no training ground, and increasing annual debt as the club stagnates, playing average football in front of dwindling crowds and failing to attract sufficient sponsorship etc as a result. Frankly, looking from the point of view of a would be investor the clubs a basket case, apart from 1 or 2 above average championship players there ain’t that much of a squad, the cupboards bare, empty, all gone, its a shell, it’s on life support. Now obviously theres some potential, but it’d take quiet a lot on “money” to get it there. You’d have to buy the club, repurchasing ER (to reduce annual overheads), invest in team, find new sponsorship, invest in the brand and all for one thing …. a return to the top division. Once there, it becomes a different beast, still not easy, but, income increases, not just from the money thats rolling around up there, bigger sponsors take an interest, gate receipts are increase as more fans turn up the watch a better quality of football (harsh but true, fans want to be entertained, its not cheap going to a match these days, or trying to convince you kids that Leeds is their team when they see the rubbish being played each week) … last week apart, though the first half wasn’t great! We’re living in a harsher world, everything quicker, this includes Football, its not just football anymore, its a business and a big business. We have to accept this and move forward with it wether we like it or not, it won’t change back to what it was 25-30 years ago when I saw my first game. The doors have been opened and the big boys have stepped through them, we need to become one of these. The alternative is championship footballs is as good as it gets … no thanks …we’re Leeds United. Cellino isn’t my perfect choice, but quiet frankly, I don’t see a realistic option … Flowers, Haigh and Co. certainly aren’t as they couldn’t find the money buy the club, never mind do the rest .. the chaos friday was as much there fault for pulling out as it was Cellino’s, they gave him that opportunity after promising the earth for 2 months then realising they didn’t have the money. I haven’t the money to save Leeds, have you? If you have, lets see it, you buy the club and see what thanks you get … if not let someone else try, at worst he fails. Wayne Wellwood Wilting flowers set to only succeed in winding up leeds fans by Rob Atkinson on news now… another good read. henrymouni I am glad I do not have to decide We do not know enough to give a sensible opinion, overall. While we don’t know how much Cellino has, or how much he would invest, we know how he runs a club. He wants a coach not a manager. He wants to be involved in choosing players and presenting them to the coach. He likes to involve himself in the tactics of the team. He is not a patient man! He seems to be the Italian Bates, as TSS has pointed out, only MORE SO. We need some tranquility and stability at the club. He does not seem like the man to give us that? If the other consortium can gives us those two things they get my vote. So much has gone on that we will never know. One suspects that maybe both GFH & Cellino wanted Brian gone, but the timing was dreadful. I am confident that if Brian could bring his own players in we would be up at the top. The players he has had to bring in on the cheap, have been OK but you can see real hope in Jimmy Kebbe & Cameron Stewart. I am sure Smith will really benefit. I have never had much faith if GFH, as you know. Having looked at their background and lack of success, I could not see things changing – and they haven’t! Same goes with Cellino. History tells us all we need to know. He brought that unfortunate player in from Italy, without asking any of the coaching staff. You don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to work out the craziness that would ensue. No amount of money would make that workable. Wayne Wellwood So just had a conversation with TSS on twitter… Adam J started to convo with. “So anyway, BMc’s rebuilding plans have been stifled by all the dead wood on the wage bill…imagine the scenario with a trigger happy owner”. I Replied “They’d be out and replaced by much better” TSS then replied with “How do you work that one out? He was the one who kept them”! I replied “He kept Varney and judging by how desperate for money GFH currently are the one who kept McCormack” TSs Replied ” I think, in fairness, the takeover situation blocked all movements. Price agreed includes current squad”. So I replied “So know that its been pointed out he could have been the one who rejected the offers for McCormack in actual fact he didn’t block the sale of Varney after all? I don’t know about anyone else but I really am getting a bit fed up with how one sided your arguments are, No matter what is said or done. henrymouni Hi Wayne. I am not sure what you are getting at? I have not read all the mails as there are so many. Did anyone hear if Green left or not? mrbigwheels Haha Henry….. this is the light relief of the day. Seem to recognise that hand from somewhere?. henrymouni I am not coming out from under until this matter is resolved Mr B!!! mrbigwheels I’ve been wondering what the plan was… for months. Remember Henry, we talked about it… What and where is the plan?. Haha… Wayne Wellwood My while point is he was happy to go along with the notion that Cellino blocked departures deadline day but when I suggested he could then have been responsible for McCormack staying all of a sudden it wasn’t Cellino it was because of the deal that no one left. That was my point. henrymouni We don’t really know who blocked the sales. Presumably it was GFH, as they are the only people who could. As the sale appeared to be so close, maybe Cellino wanted to decide on the departures. He seems to be a control freak. It’s all guesswork. Wayne Wellwood Exactly so why then try to suggest Cellino did? If he did he obviously also blocked the McCormack bids Wayne Wellwood What more do flowers n his mates have to do to make people realise they are incompent clowns? TSS Why do they have to be a “set of clowns” just because you’ve fallen for this Italian guy? He’s a Leeds fan who attempted to put his money where his mouth is and takeover the club, something no one else has done while we’ve been in the shit. Just because you didn’t want him or agree with his concerns about Cellino doesn’t make him a clown. It makes him a fan whose pumped a hell of a lot of money into this club over the last few years through sponsorship and bailed GFH out of shit with loans to keep us afloat – would you lend money to LUFC? He did. Christ, this is getting ridiculous. We’ve descended into a situation where anyone we don’t agree with must be slandered and ridiculed, it’s pathetic. Wayne Wellwood After all flowers has done your still believing his I love Leeds chat? I fell for the obvious choice, you just don’t want to see it. Give it 6 months you’ll be singing Cellino’s name. TSS I hope you’re right, I really do. But if you’re not, I’ll take no pleasure in being right myself. Most of us just want what’s best for LUFC, I suspect you’re equally concerned with being right all the time, hence your inability to take a single point on-board anyone has made over the last two days, ignoring every fact and basing your own opinions on nothing but guesswork. What is it you think Flowers has done exactly? Aside from the winding-up petition he used as nothing more than a stalling tactic to get his own offer heard (which every major news outlet, including the FT, has recognised but some fans have totally ignored), all he’s really done is invested millions in sponsorship and bailed GFH out of shit for months to keep Leeds afloat. What a twat, eh? dessss Flowers has withdrawn completely from any sort of takeover. Is he still a hero to you TSS? henrymouni Wear the proper clothing!! henrymouni I am saying it is a possibility that Cellino was involved as he was lined up to takeover the club. Ross also. As Mr Flowers has just dropped out of the running, it seems that Mr Cellino is close to completion, once the FA approves. TSS Cellino did! This was widely reported. And that’s how it works when a takeover is ongoing, the price agreed to purchase a club includes the playing staff so GFH can’t sell them after a deal is agreed. TSS Eh? My first comment was “How do you work that one out? He was the one who kept them!” which is true since takeover proceedings stopped the club from acting. McCormack didn’t want to leave until the point when McDermott was fired by Cellino so to praise him for Ross staying is a bit of a stretch. But that’s beside the point, neither me or Adam were really blaming Cellino for Brian being unable to clear out and add to his squad, just pointing out the irony that his takeover has blocked movement and he then attempted to fire McDermott who still hasn’t had chance to rebuild this squad because of the continuing chaos of Elland Road. I think you’re reading between too many lines and inventing your own conclusions on a lot of this. Cellino was never my preferred bidder, but if he’s the one who takes over I’ll give him every chance. Anything I’ve said up ’til this point has been based purely on his time at Cagliari which is the only evidence we have to go on. A lot of you are resorting to guesswork claiming he’ll throw money at us to convince yourself he’s the right option, and that’s fine, but there’s no evidence from his time at Cagliari to support that theory and it remains purely guesswork (just like people claiming the rival bidders have no cash is). My primary concern about Cellino – as it always has been – comes down to the football. He interferes way too much in first team affairs and wants to act as de facto first team manager. That’s not good for any club. And you can throw all the Serie A/Cagliari stuff around as much as you like, but Serie A is an incredibly poor league outside the top handful of teams, the standards are so much lower than the Prem the two aren’t even close to comparable. The Prem is an absolute money sink and staying in there takes a lot more Serie A does. Again, he’s kept Cagliari up there while profiting from transfers, that doesn’t happen to many teams in the Prem. TSS Not sure what you think you’ve proven here? Adam was (quite obviously) suggesting Brian McDermott has been shafted by current owners and – as we saw – the trigger-happy Cellino failed to recognise these mitigating circumstances. Clearly the conversation switched to players and you claimed he’d have cleared out all the deadwood (which he may well do) but, ironically, it’s the ongoing takeover saga preventing McDermott from clearing out the deadwood. Cellino – whether he wanted to or not – stopped McD getting rid of Varney et al on deadline day because the club is basically locked down while talks complete. The point you’ve totally missed is that McDermott’s attempts to build a squad at Elland Road have twice been thwarted by takeover nonsense, yet Cellino failed to recognise that and prematurely pulled the trigger. None of that is one-sided, it isn’t even taking a stab at anyone, it’s merely the facts of the situation. I have no idea what you’ve interpreted it as, but I’d suggest you misunderstood completely.