Still to come...

Two in, two out was the final days transfer trading for Leeds United as Ramon Nunez and Adam Clayton sealed deals at Elland Road, with Alan Sheehan and Lubomir Michalik heading off to pastures new.

Overall, Leeds have signed a total of eleven new players over the summer, all of which are listed below.

Player Pos Age From Cost
Adam Clayton CM 21 Man City £250,000*
Alex Bruce CB/DM 25 Ipswich £200,000*
Billy Paynter STR 25 Swindon Free
Federico Bessone LB 26 Swansea Free
Kasper Schmeichel GK 23 Notts County Free
Lloyd Sam WNG 25 Charlton Free
Neill Collins CB 26 Preston £100,000*
Paul Connolly RB 26 Derby Free
Ramon Nunez AM 24 Free Agent Free
Ross McCormack STR 24 Cardiff £500,000*
Sanchez Watt WNG/STR 19 Arsenal Loan

*All Leeds United’s transfers have been ‘undisclosed fees’ so the figures used are estimates from other sources or guess-work on my part.

The early concerns when the 2009/10 season ended was who would replace Jermaine Beckford after his move to Everton was confirmed? Over the last few weeks however, Simon Grayson has given us a dizzying array of goalscoring options and left us looking like one of the most dangerous teams in the league.

Luciano Becchio has started the season firing on all cylinders, whilst new additions Ross McCormack and Billy Paynter give us some proven goalscoring options. Add to that the emergence of Davide Somma as a real candidate to the starting XI, and you start to wonder what all the fuss was about?

Even more threatening are the two wide-men, Sanchez Watt and Lloyd Sam, who both have pace to burn and can go round a player with ease. It’s been a long time since Leeds United looked this threatening going forward, but Simon Grayson has really delivered in an attacking sense and we continue to produce goals from all areas of the pitch.

Whilst the attacking options look good, the defence is an entirely different story. Neill Collins has been the only good addition in this area, giving pretty consistent performances in all his games so far. The two full-backs, Federico Bessone and Paul Connolly however, haven’t impressed and with Richard Naylor somehow holding down a first team place, our defence would appear to have more holes in it than the German Bismarck.

A lot has been said about the need for a holding midfielder, but for me, that’s simply papering over the cracks. The real issue is the defence, and what we need is a centre-back with some pace – but maybe the addition of Alex Bruce will solve that?

Overall, the additions have been pretty good from Grayson. The defence has it’s flaws, but it could just be a gelling process that will sort itself with time? In the meantime, the best signing of this summer has been keeping us in it.

Son-of-Scum, Kasper Schmeichel has been an absolute revelation since his surprise unveiling early-doors. His command of the area, handling skills and impressive shot-stopping ability instantly impressed the Leeds United faithful, and the keeper could prove to be the difference between the play-offs and an instantly forgettable season.

With so many players added to the squad, naturally, some had to leave – below is a full list of the players that have left Elland Road;

Player Pos Age To Cost
Alan Martin GK 21 Barrow Loan
Alan Sheehan LB 23 Swindon Released
Andrew Milne CB 19 Barrow Released
Casper Ankergren GK 30 Brighton Released
Jermaine Beckford STR 26 Everton Free
Liam Darville CB 19 Tranmere Loan
Lubomir Michalik CB 27 Carlisle Loan
Paul Dickov STR 37 Oldham Released
Rui Marques CB 32 Unattached Released
Tom Elliot STR 19 Rotherham Loan
Tom Lees CB 19 Bury Loan
Tresor Kandol STR 28 Unattached Released

In total, twelve players have left Elland Road this summer with five of them on loan elsewhere. Obviously, the biggest loss was Jermaine Beckford, but as we’ve already seen, Simon Grayson has done an excellent job of sorting our attacking options out.

It’s good to see the youngsters, Darville, Elliot, Lee and Martin getting some valuable first-team experience elsewhere, although Simon Grayson’s record so far doesn’t suggest we’re ever going to see them in a Leeds United shirt.

With Aidy White and Ben Parker out injured, I think releasing Alan Sheehan was a mistake. I remain hopeful that it’s just a gelling process for Fede Bessone, but he’s hardly set the world alight with his performances so far and whilst Sheehan was never the best left-back, he was a reliable option if needed.

With twelve players out, you can’t complain too much. We knew the squad was a bit heavy on deadwood, and Grayson has done his best to address that. Andy Robinson remains a bit of a stalling point, but I still expect his contract to be terminated in the coming weeks (if no loan offer is forthcoming).

I suspect there will be other players heading out on-loan throughout the season, most notably, Mike Grella who has fallen so far down the pecking order now that he’s lost his place on the bench. There’s also the likes of Leigh Bromby, Andy Hughes and Jason Crowe that are not going to be happy making the numbers up and may be eager to get some games elsewhere.

I said before the season started that I thought the play-offs were a realistic aim, and after a promising start and some excellent additions, I think Simon Grayson is heading in the right direction. I keep coming back to the defence as a concern, but if we can sort that out, then we’re looking very strong.