An improved performance last night from The Whites, but Leeds’ pre-season continues to underwhelm as a Rudy Austin penalty was required to seal victory against a Swindon side with an average age of 20.

The desperate need for reinforcements remains obvious, but the good news is, new additions look set to arrive shortly.

A deal to bring defensive midfielder Federico Viviani to the club on a season-long loan stalled last week with his people speaking of complications and suggesting the standard of football they’d seen in Leeds’ 2-0 loss to lowly Mansfield Town was lower than they’d imagined. However, it still looks as if Viviani wants to come to Elland Road and confirmation of his signing is expected shortly.

Leeds will again turn to Italy for another loan deal with 18-year-old AC Milan midfielder Zan Benedic the next target. The youngster is currently at the International Champions’ Cup in America but will fly home early to hold talks with Massimo Cellino.

Finally, there’s some speculation Leeds are set to open talks with Chesterfield for defender Liam Cooper, who the newly promoted League One club are said to value at £1,000,000. Cooper, a former Hull City Tigers player, is just 22-years-old but has already made 92 league appearances. He helped Chesterfield to the League Two title and final of the Football League Trophy last season and was named in the League Two team of the year.

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  • Bluesman

    I thought that Hockaday was leaving the flak behind, lol. It hasn’t even started.

  • I fully believe when we finally assemble our actual squad we can build on results. We’ve a tough start to our league season, but with some quality sprinkled throughout, we can give it a shout at a stable season.

    We won’t be pressing for promotion until next year anyway. A building season this one really. I would like Benito to have a shot in charge, from all reports his lads like to play the football we would love.

  • Tare

    Personally I am interested to see how these young Italian based players gel with our Academy’s finest like CD, AM, LC, LW etc. Football is International language even though these boys from the South are not so familiar (yet) with English language. Mixed with a couple of strong and experienced CBs and a new number “8” . But we will see what “roller coaster” headmaster MC has in his pocket:).

    Tare

  • Ron

    There appears to still be a level of expectation that Cellino will re-invest McCormack’s fee into the player roster. I for one expect very little of it to be spent. Consider that money helping to pay for ER. Cellino is not finished with the cost-cutting and I expect quite a few of the higher earners to be out the door by the end of August. Only in January will we see if Cellino really wants to invest e.g. avoiding relegation. Only by then will the Italians have time to prove their worth also. We desperately need some width in this squad and I’m sure Cellino can see that. There is no point having Matt Smith in your team without balls in the box (Gradel??). Doukara may surprise us all, but one proven finisher being fed by Mowatt, Byram and Smith would give us all a huge lift. Any suggestions <£3m?

  • Dr Zen

    1. Sell best player.
    2. “Buy” bunch of loans and frees.
    3. ???
    4. Midtable.

    Can’t get too excited about spending a milly on a guy who wasn’t good enough for Hull since a/ we are reported to have offered a lot less and it’s probably just going to come to nothing and b/ he likely isn’t a huge improvement on what we have now. As always, I hope to be proved wrong but it’s actually all depressingly familiar.

  • markman

    When MC arrived almost the first thing he said was it would take at least 2 years to get to the premiership.
    all the incoming Italians have represented Italy at various levels,so have some quality.the incomers seem superior to those that have left(not including RM).

    Despite some less than impressive performances things will improved but patience will undoubtably be needed.

    Cant understand fans who talk the team down before a ball has been kicked in anger.
    some are worried but its not slitting wrists time.

  • NottsWhite

    I am not too concerned regarding the quality being brought in (albeit slowly) however I think we need a sprinkling of quality experience to lead the youth on the pitch. When I look at the current crop I don’t see many leaders apart from Pearce. A take no prisoners centre back, some width for tactical variation and a centre forward who knows where the net is will do for me.

  • oldschoolbaby

    This is Leeds. Almost by definition the running of the club is beyond prediction and beyond assessment in pre season. I am reserving judgement.
    What I do know is the youth set up is capable of producing quality. Modern day youngsters can be indolent, arrogant tossers. And fear can be healthy. Living within your means is, I`ve no doubt, one of Cellino`s more sensible objectives. That said I`d like to make a belated protest at the dismissal of Richard Naylor

  • lufcboy

    We have now ended our interest in Cooper – announced on our website. A bit bizaare, I don’t recall us doing that before, maybe a tactic to get the player to put in a transfer request?

    • TSS

      I’ve stopped reading the official site, it feels like a pissed off teenager has written some of the stuff. And yeah, I’d guess it’s a negotiating tactic since they refused two bids.

  • pick

    anyone see tom lees transfer coming?

    i know i didnt…..