Neil Redfearn fronted a press conference this afternoon just hours after the suspension of his Assistant Head Coach, Steve Thompson.

It quickly became clear Neil Redfearn knew nothing of the suspension beforehand and was as surprised as the Leeds United fans by the morning’s events. A statement from Leeds United provided no clarity, only confirmation of the suspension, putting the decision on Cellino’s right-hand man, Nicolas Salerno.

A confused Neil Redfearn said he felt ‘undermined’ by the decision and was now considering his own future in the wake of these events. Thompson is a good friend of the Leeds United boss and their time together has seen a remarkable turnaround in fortunes for Leeds who have climbed clear of a dangerous relegation battle to secure a comfortable mid-table spot.

With no explanation for Steve Thompson’s suspension and given a perceived reluctance by the club to renew the contract of Neil Redfearn, despite the great work he’s done bringing a new generation of youth players into the first team and dramatically improving the club’s form, speculation has taken hold with many positing theories that Thompson’s suspension is nothing more than a move to unsettle Neil Redfearn.

It sounds like wild conspiracy but given the reaction to Brian McDermott’s sacking last year, Massimo Cellino would be reluctant to sack a man who the Leeds United fans hold in the highest regard. If he does – as contract delays may suggest – wish to replace Redfearn at the end of the season and this is part of some twisted game to ease the backlash, Leeds United will have reached new levels of madness.

Elsewhere, The Sun claim Neil Redfearn has been told not to play Mirco Antenucci due to fears he’ll score and trigger a goal bonus, which if true, raises genuine concerns about the club’s financial health.

All of this comes on a day when Leeds Fans LLP unveiled plans for a supporter-led investment scheme to purchase a share of the club. Given the kind of characters this club generally attracts, getting the fans in a position of power (albeit, minority ownership) is long overdue.

  • This position is a tragedy… Cellino is certainly not going to save this Club or head it in a positive direction with the present ‘upper’ management pulling the trapdoor lever… or levers, even.

  • Marc Butterworth

    Wow…Cheaplino strikes again…..we don’t know all the facts obviously but whatever the reason, for Redfearn not to be aware is just astounding….the sooner the FL forces Cheaplino out of our club, the better…

  • Chareose

    the frustrating thing is we could all see the light at the end of the tunnell, we just needed to bolster what we had, extend the youngsters contracts and keep on the management team who have been responsible for our improved performances…………..the problem is its all about ego as i dont see how these decisions have the best interests of the club at heart……… perhaps we can link this to the departure of matt childs and the feeling that the italians feel their supremacy at the top of the leeds hierachy is being undermined

    As a fan i think i speak for the rest of us in saying, we dont give a damn who gets the credit all we care about is the club. Evidently this is not shared by the current owners who are wrecking a fragile recovery

  • Tarmo Lappalainen

    This Circus has certainly reached its outer limits when all the things looked reasonable good looking for next season promotion push then again this farce approaching like bad flu. My analytic approach and asking here is that we brought 15 imports from Italian market and they have performed with known results, some are excellent like Marco but the actual life saver for the LUFC has been the Academy based players.

    Is there some power play between the parties? It seems like e.g. Adryan should have been played but Redders was stone hard selecting to LC/AM/LM.

    It seems to me that this is sand box play for the “adults”.

    Maybe it is so that MC/NS never ever valued our Academy for producing top players which is the best in UK at the moment.

    I hope this mess again could be solved with Yorkshire based investor, it seems that we are in the big trouble if our crown jewels would choose other wise after this season.

    Tare

  • Tyler75

    Quite frankly, I’m relieved. I was getting concerned about my ability to process increasing levels of ‘positivity’ and ‘looking forward to next season’

    • RichyM

      Well we haven’t had any off field drama for a bit, some was due. What is going on in Cellino’s head I do not know and we need an explanation quickly.

  • oldschoolbaby

    Fact, fiction, fable an April Foolery all melt into one at Elland Rd. Having no idea what is going on I can only highlight what I do know :
    1. Redders can`t do it all on his own.
    2. There has been significant improvement since Thompson arrived
    3. Redders simply has to be in this managerial loop.
    Even by our unfortunately low standards this is poor

    • Irving08

      Plainly it is not healthy for a chief coach and his assistant to be as closely personally connected as Redders apparently is with Thompson. But presumably Cellino and Salerno knew about the connection in December, when they acceded – albeit reluctantly – to Redfearn’s wish that Thompson be appointed his assistant. Just because they are now, arguably, in a stronger position vis a vis Redders himself, does not mean, not if they truly understand our sensibilities, that they can apparently dispense with common courtesies, especially in a matter of some delicacy. Of course, if Redders was in the loop, and he is simply standing nobly by his old mucker, whom he believes anyway to have done a decent job, it appears that Redders is being tested for his ambition and/or belief in the Cellino/Salerno way of running a football club. It is interesting to note that Neil at Norwich is working with the coaches already at the club….

  • Ryan Swift

    I share tyler’s views, I was quite frankly fed up with all the press giving us praise for the youngster and the future of the club. lets get back to what we’re good at, being a joke and a laughing stock for everyone elses amusement

  • Lars

    Honestly wouldn’t the big ROI for Cellino to get the club up to the PL? Wouldn’t sticking with whats been successful go along with that? I hope Thompson actually did something to legitimately earn this suspension because at least that’d make it feel like they’re not just pulling the rug out.

  • Surely this is designed to rattle Redders….
    Thompson has supposedly underachieved?….
    Child leaves, the man who got Thompson in… eventually….
    What is Cellino and his crew up to?….
    No finances or the Club up for sale?….

    • Tyler75

      Either a power play by Cellino (no doubt its his decision) or he’s readying the club to be sold. I’ve been very pro-Cellino – his passion and commitment won me over and even his lunacy and persecution complex seemed a perfect fit for what LUFC had become. However I really hoped we could transcend the madness and with Redders and the young lads a bright future looked to be on the horizon but it seems Cellino doesn’t do bright horizons – its all about him and his ego. Massimo please do us all a favour and give Russell a call. MOT

  • henrymouni

    The Italian Ken Bates strikes again!!
    The most unacceptable thing is that they never spoke to Redders first.
    Which means they do not respect him, or what he has achieved!!
    They do not care if he leaves as well!!!
    This will leave them open to cash in on the younger players!!!

    We need help!!

    • John Howley

      The fans must organise a mass protest to stop this madness.

    • Irving08

      Yes, it appears that due respect has not been paid to Redfearn. Cellino/Salerno might justifiably question English football’s ‘old boy’s network’ of coaching teams, with their sometimes highly personal flavour, yet it is elementary good manners to take take into their confidence a chief coach who has served them with loyalty, patience and improving performance. It seems a particularly inept and crude way of telling Redfearn that, for next season, he does not get to chose his own coaching team.

      • Irving08

        Of course, the Italians themselves are guilty of bringing with them a highly personalised way of doing things. Loyalty to the leader appears to be the organising principle. Not healthy.

        • henrymouni

          Never ends well Irv!

  • Mick444

    This is either a disaster or the starting point for long suffering Leeds fans. If Leeds LLP ever wanted a free marketing expo it just got it! Now is the time for the entire global Leeds United fraternity (and believe me it is huge) to stop lamenting about the 15 years of soap box shenanigans and do something about fan ownership. The Leeds Fans launch is set for April 7th and I wish I was in the UK to attend. I realise that the everyday fan that works hard for their living is never going to be in a position to donate major funding but if there is a clear mass of support willing to put in £100 then surely that will encourage bigger hitters to get involved. I have already started enlisting “help” from down under supporters and business people. If Leeds Fans LLP can show us how to do it then let’s all get involved and rid ourselves of the madmen gate keepers of our club!!
    As an aside I feel shattered for Steve Thompson. The results Leeds achieved since his arrival have been nothing short of spectacular – even if performances have been streaky. The least you expect as a supporter is a team commited to the cause and since the arrival of Thommo that has been indisputable.

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