Once the club had responded to yesterdays revelation that Jermaine Beckford had handed a transfer request in, one thing struck me as unusual – the date.

"That" Jermaine Beckford goal

It’s not so much the fact that the transfer request had already been handed in before the Manchester United game, that didn’t surprise me at all as I expected him to leave as soon as Newcastle announced their interest, and besides, we’d been hearing them particular rumours for a week. No, the thing that surprised me was the fact that Leeds United published the date.

For a club that likes to keep the fans in the dark as much as possible, and for a club that has kept this transfer request secret for a week, was there really any need for them to reveal the date the transfer request was handed in? What could they possibly be hoping to achieve by doing so?

It makes me wonder if Newcastle United’s unsettling of Beckford through the media has caused a rift between Leeds United and Beckford – or more precisely, Bates and Beckford.

Ken Bates, Shaun Harvey or whoever was responsible for publishing that date aren’t stupid. The reaction to the Leeds United fans discovering the date of the transfer request, as you can imagine, was hardly a positive one. Leeds United (by which I mean the people running the club) will have known exactly how the fans would react, so for me; this seems to be a parting gift to Beckford as he leaves Leeds United FC.

Of course, I’m only speculating here, but the thing I’d guess caused this particular rift is the ‘take it or leave it’ offer Newcastle United issued shortly before the request was announced. If Leeds United are short on offers, then Newcastle United’s offer of £1.5m may be the only option they have. It’s a clever game Newcastle have played, ensuring they get Beckford for the cheapest possible price, but Bates has to cover his bases and by turning the fans against Beckford, when he does leave for less than we expected, we’ll be glad to see the back of him.

For me, I hate the way this whole thing has been carried out, but I refuse to hold anything against Jermaine Beckford. If someone was offering me three times the money I’m on now to do the same job elsewhere, I’d be off in a flash. Loyalty and emotion are rare traits in footballers, and Beckford has no reason to offer either to Leeds United.

He’s scored a lot of goals for Leeds United, provided us with a lot of good memories and will leave on the back of his famous goal at Old Trafford, which knocked Scum out of the cup. Leeds United will move on. We’ll find a replacement and we’ll still be crowned champions in May regardless of what Beckford does, because it’s Simon Grayson leading the team and in Grayson, we trust.