As Uwe is linked, we bid a sad farewell to one of our own TSS May 19, 2015 Leeds United 31 Comments In hindsight, the writing was on the wall for Neil Redfearn when Steve Thompson was inexplicably suspended. At the time, it was explained to me the decision was made by Cellino who’d become consumed by paranoia during his Football League imposed exile, singling Thompson out as the change which had brought about a breakdown in communication between himself and Redfearn. It all seemed so childish to be true. For a man of Cellino’s age to lash out like a spoilt brat because he was jealous of one man’s relationship with another beggared belief, but as time went on, little else made any sense. The official line claimed Nicola Salerno (a man who hasn’t worked at the club or made any comment since) was responsible for the decision after Thompson hurled abuse at him following a match, claims that weren’t adding up for anyone, particularly those who were around the team after the match in question like Radio Leeds’ Adam Pope. Still, the thought that our owner deliberately undermined the manager- and in so doing destabilised the team- because he’d grown paranoid and jealous was more insane than all that had gone before it. Yet for me, any remaining doubts dissipated upon hearing Cellino’s bizarre press conference last week. In it, he scoffed angrily about Redfearn’s communication with him during his ban, claiming he’d hear from Neil when things were going badly but when things were going well, there was no contact, a claim I can well believe given there’s no reason for Redfearn to contact and explain himself to an owner when things are going smoothly. The bitter snipes continued, Cellino moaned about the players he’d brought in being under-utilised and claimed, in a round-about way, to have made Neil Redfearn the man he is today, clearly angered by some perceived betrayal or ungrateful response. But what exactly was Redfearn supposed to be grateful for? For stepping up after Cellino had hired and fired another unsuitable head coach? For the crop of talented youngsters he’s developed and brought into our first team, youngsters who’ll sell for millions should Cellino choose to do so? For carrying himself and representing the club with the utmost dignity while rescuing us from relegation in the most shambolic of circumstances? Cellino’s got this all wrong, it’s Redfearn who deserves the gratitude, for without him we’d probably be in League One with Edgar Cani tasked with firing us back to glory. And from most, Redfearn will get the gratitude. Even if his rescue mission was a job well done, but judged to be as far as he could take us, the way in which his (now inevitable) exit has been conducted is a disgrace, one which won’t soon be forgiven by myself or many other Leeds United fans. Cellino mocked our fan culture (the Leeds salute) and tried to belittle the relationship between Redfearn and the fans because he’s jealous of it. Redfearn gets Leeds because Redfearn is Leeds. Cellino wants that love and respect too, he wants us to be cheering his name from the stands, but burning one of us won’t win Cellino the approval he so desperately craves. Life at the club must go on though and no matter how disgraceful the treatment of Redfearn to create the vacancy was, it’s a vacancy that needs to be filled and it looks like the next watermelon may be Uwe Rosler. The former Brentford and Wigan boss would be a solid choice from Cellino. Our friends at Beesotted, a Brentford fanzine, did a rather in-depth piece on him for Wigan fans last year in which Rosler’s style is described as possession-based, high-pressing football. He’s said to take an extreme approach to fitness levels and often fields baffling and inconsistent line-ups in the name of squad rotation, though he did ease up on that a bit towards the end of his time with The Bees. He’s also known to totally change the system midway through a match which isn’t going his way. One wonders how Rosler could be attracted to Elland Road given the chaos we’re so often consumed by and the lack of time he’ll be afforded by a man with zero patience, but if he is to be the new head coach, he’s as good a choice as any. As for Redders, I feel downright ashamed by the club’s handling of this matter, it’s an absolute travesty that his service to Leeds United has ended in such an ugly manner, but the fickle nature of football means there’ll be many doors open to a man whose stock has undoubtedly risen in the last twelve months so I know he’ll find a new home quickly, hopefully at a club which treats him with the respect and appreciation he so surely deserves. The great work Redfearn did at Leeds United won’t soon be forgotten by our fanbase who’ll always be ready to welcome him home as one of our own. Best of luck for the future Neil. We wish you every success. MOT.