It’s a bit of a running joke amongst Leeds United fans that choosing to support the Whites should come with a health warning. Every team has it’s ups and downs, but after the last few years of following Leeds United to some of the most unusual and grottiest places I never knew existed, I feel as though we’ve had more than our fair share of downs.

There have been some ups of course. Every cloud does have a silver lining, but in Leeds United’s case, the cloud is a monstrously big black one and the silver lining is a fine, almost invisible shimmer around its edge.

It’s not only us fans that suffer the consequences of this seemingly never-ending sequence of disasters though. Our friends, family and loved ones can often fall victim to the aftermath too. I’m sure I’m not alone in saying that my mood on a Sunday morning can often be dictated by the result the day before. Although it makes no sense to anyone other than those that live, breathe and love Leeds United, the 460 mile round trip to watch Leeds United fall to pieces in Gillingham is something I wouldn’t have missed for the world – no matter how annoyed I was afterwards.

My head tells me it’s just a game and that I’m insane for spending such an enormous amount of my income following this team through thick, thin and thinner, but somewhere inside me there’s an irrational love for this club that keeps me coming back time and time again, like a beaten wife to her abusive lover.

This season has once again taken Leeds United fans on a crazy rollercoaster ride of emotions. Leading the way early on and opening up a good lead at the top, Leeds United were unbeatable until the nasty thugs at Millwall drew the first blood. Leeds bounced back though with successive 4-0 wins that sent a statement of intent to the rest of League One.

As the season progressed, Leeds United were reminded of better days when the Premier League giants Liverpool visited Elland Road. Not even the most optimistic breed of Leeds United fan was predicting a win, but Leeds held their own and despite ultimately losing the match, there was a sense of pride amongst Leeds United fans few have felt for years. Liverpool may have won the match, but Leeds had shown millions they were on the rise again with a fearless display that almost paid off.

The seasons climax came in January though. Leeds were flying in the League and it seemed as though no one could stand in the way of our title challenge. The draw we’d all hoped for came next. FA Cup Round 3 – Manchester United v Leeds United.

"That" Jermaine Beckford goal

Expecting a slightly more defensive Leeds United was probably Man U’s downfall. Leeds came, they saw and they conquered. It was no fluke either. Leeds attacked from the off, and for the thousands of us that were lucky enough to have tickets to Old Trafford that day, we witnessed the proudest moment in our clubs recent history as Jermaine Beckford’s solitary goal knocked Man United out of the FA Cup. “We’re not famous anymore!”

Leeds dropped out of the FA Cup in the next round after taking Tottenham Hotspur to a replay, but these were proud days for the resurgent Whites. We’d held our own against Premier League competition, knocking out the English champions on their own soil in the process. As Leeds United ups go, this was the climax of a season. .

This being Leeds United however, when everything is going so magnificently well, something has to go wrong. Whether it was the Jermaine Beckford January transfer saga, a fitness problem caused by lack of rotation, our poor showing in the transfer market or an adverse impact of too many loanees unsettling the squad, the Leeds United rollercoaster was starting to derail.

The form dipped, and game by game, Leeds’ hold at the top loosened. By the end of January, Norwich had overtaken Leeds at the top and things didn’t improve. Despite a substantial lead on the play-off places, Leeds simply couldn’t turn things round quick enough and at the beginning of April, Leeds United dropped into third and the dreaded play-offs started to look like a reality.

Luckily for Leeds, through a combination of improved form and the rest of the league failing to capitalise on our errors we regained second place. A dismal points haul against the top six, disastrous results against the likes of Gillingham, Walsall and Exeter and the ongoing love/hate relationship between the fans and Jermaine Beckford could all be used as reasons to why we failed, but the truth of the matter is, this is Leeds United – We always do things the hard way!

What it all comes down to is one game. 90 minutes of football at a sold-out Elland Road against a Bristol Rovers side with absolutely nothing left to play for. Win, and we’re promoted. Lose, and the gates are opened for the rest to jump in. Whatever the fans think about the current playing squad, the manager’s tactics and selections or Jermaine Beckford’s selfishness is irrelevant. These people have put Leeds United in a position to escape third tier football. They’ve done it the hard way, but this is Leeds United and deep down inside, however frustrating they may be, it’s the ‘ups and downs’ that keep us coming back.

Keep fighting Leeds – We’re almost there!

Don’t forget to cast your vote in the TSS Player of the season poll by clicking here. Voting closes on Sunday at midday.

29 Responses

  1. colet

    I see Trollope has been accepting help from other clubs to try and expose our weeknesses, he’s def talking the game up!! However, i bet his players are thinking.. “beat Leeds here and we may not get out of here alive”!

  2. Chris from Wakey

    We have nothing to lose and everything to lose! If we lose then it looks like the play-offs. If we win we go up and all go mental at Elland Road. Bearing in mind that we have done best when we attack and worst when we let other teams get in our faces then is tomorrow the the day to go all out for a goal fest? Play four at the back and keep the full backs in defence with, say, Mickey Doyle in front to break up Bristols attack alongside Neil Killkenny as playmaker in midfield constantly getting the ball forward all the time to a front four who have the ability to score with instructions to just keep going for Bristols goal.Bring on some fresh attacking legs earlier and go for it big time.

  3. Paul South Wales

    Despite what a lot of Leeds fans think of him, we are where we are because of him. A dream send off for Beckford tomorrow would be a a starting birth and a couple of goals to remind us of the Becks of old. Like him or love him his goals have got us here so it’s only fitting his goals will send us up tomorrow. He can then ride off into the liverpudlian sunset with his head held high knowing he finished what he started, and the very best of luck to him. 3-0 MOT

    • Craig

      I completely misread this on the first run through – I thought you were hoping Beckford would get sent off!

  4. Matt BB

    Well I’m going to be there tomorrow and will shout the team on, I cannot stand this awful league any more. If Bristol Rovers are going there with nothing to pla for other than to ruin it for Leeds they deserve to lose. As you say though we always do things the harest way we can so I can certainly imagine a very turse afternoon. Come on Lads.

  5. Lee B

    Does anyone know if this match will be screened anywhere on the web?
    My usual source is myp2p, but it’s not listed there.

    Many thanks

  6. Oliver Gough

    After last Saturdays results I was nervous but as the week has progressed I have been feeling more and more confident, but the more I thought about it the more I realised that we should be confident and remain positive as we have more than enough players who can pull something out of thin air.

    I have belief but if its going really wrong my recent visits to the gym mean I would be good for the last 10 minutes ;)

  7. Paul South Wales

    We need an early goal(s) to get us on our way. The longer it’s nil-nil the more nervous our fans will get and this transmits to the players. In their faces from the off and attack attack attack (oh and defend when need be). Still 3-0 though yaaaaaay MOT

  8. Benjamin Bunny

    So jealous of you guys with tickets!
    Working tommorow but gonna be checking my phone every 5 minutes come 3pm.

    • Craig

      I’m in meetings all tomorrow and don’t get out until 5.00. How am I going to concentrate?

  9. Timothy Wilson

    We don’t get much live coverage of Leeds on the telly here in the US, but the last two were Histon amd Scum, so I haven’t seen us lose on the big screen yet, hope this continues tomorrow, have a mate coming over to watch so there’ll be an army of two on the sofa in the AM. I’d like to see 10 to 15 minutes of confident possession on the ground to settle any nerves(speshly mine) then go for the throat. 2-0 at half time will be nice. 27 hours an counting. Ave it!!

  10. Si

    Nobody else seems to have mentioned it, but that was excellently written TSS. Accurate to a T and as honest as you like. Nice Work….

    Just wanted to correcct you on one piece though, the bit about Sunday mornings….. mine starts at 4.50pm on a Saturday afternoon and my whole weekend hangs on 4.50pm on a Saturday.

    The one thing i do notice though is the low’s (lost on Saturday) last a lot longer than the high’s (won on Saturday)

    I reckon the low’s last until i have read the match report in the Monday morning paper, once i have read it, its all forgotten and head down.

    The high’s seem to last only until mid Sunday afternoon and then vanish in a haze of Roast Beef

    Three nil tomorrow for me – lets just stick it up em like we know we can. Beckford Hatrick and good luck at Everton son and thanks for the memories

  11. Mark R

    The scene is set – 39000 cheering on the Mighty Whites.
    It all comes down to 90 minutes.
    Win and we’re on our way …anything else is unthinkable.
    Time for the players to stand strong and deliver.

    Cannot wait to take my seat.

    We’re Leeds United …We’ll never be defeated !


  12. les

    tommorrow is the biggest game since we got relegated from prem ,bigger even than the championship play off game against watford ,simply because winning that game would of arguably put us into more debt etc etc .
    this game is ours to loose and us been leeds could defo do that .however i do think we will win but to ease the nerves can we have an early goal ,if not two .and lets be right we should be looking to beat bristol however it won,t be easy and it will not go all our own way .us as fans have to be on the side of leeds united ,the team ,they will not any of them cross that line without trying to win and with 40 odd thousand ish behind them .
    i hope tomorrow is our last game of the season ,i can go off to glastonbury in a happy mood .and come back in august in the championship at home to ??? pompey .
    just on elast thing new kit a little plain but ok ,dont like the badge

  13. Si

    Superstition anyone?

    In the last two decades to finish in a 0, we have achieved something on the final day of the season.

    In 1990 we were promoted, in 2000 we qualified for the Champions League, so surely 2010 must be promotion?

    Its not just our history, Sheffield Wednesday were relegated last Sunday and have now been relegated in 1990, 2000 and 2010.

    • TSS

      That’s some crazy stuff, but I don’t believe in all that nonsense. Leeds need to turn up and earn their place in the CCC. I’m worried we may bottle it, but don’t doubt our ability to win convincingly.

      • TheReaper08

        I’ve just been down and placed my lucky 3-1 Leeds scorecast with Beckford to score first. Don’t really care if the bet wins it’s more that every time I place the bet we win.

        I have only ever had it come in once !

  14. Lee Coward

    Well written TSS, couldn’t have summed up the season any better myself, still brings a little tear to the eye thinking about standing shoulder to shoulder with my teams faithful on the Old Traffird terraces. Regardless of what happens tomorrow you can be sure it will be emotional…. Let’s hope it’s tears of joy just like jan 3rd. MOT

    • Mike

      Only 12 1/2 hours to go

      What I like about Leeds is that you have no idea which team will turn up – How many fans follow there team wondering if it will be a 3.0 defeat or a 3.0 win.

      I mean 9 times out of 10 a club would just win tomorrows match with a tidy 2.0 win. Why is it that I am sat here knowing full well we will go 1.0 down, equalise in the 77th minute and no doubt score the winner with the ref about to blow the final whistle.

      Only 12 hours 25 minutes to go!

  15. TheReaper08

    Whatever happens in this game Max Gradel is a fecking tit !

    • TheReaper08

      I had to go out for a walk Craig, couldn’t take it anymore mate.

      What a day…..


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