The news that former Chelsea and Birmingham City striker Mikael Forrsell is currently on trial at Elland Road should have us all screaming from the rooftops after the summer we’ve had at Leeds.

His arrival at Elland Road should be met with similar scenes to that of Cesc Fabregas’ at the Nou Camp. Or at the very least, be creating a similar sort of buzz to that of Kasper Schmeichel last season.

But pragmatism reigns supreme at Leeds United these days, partly because we’ve hyped players up in the past only to see their footballing legacy destroyed by half a dozen appearances in a White shirt, but mainly because he’s only on trial.

The very fact we need to see him train before we offer him a contract sets alarm bells ringing straight away. It begs the question, why has no one else signed him up yet? And why did his last club let him go?

Forrsell is a solid, experienced 1 in 3 striker who has proven himself at both domestic and international level. So what is he doing at Thorp Arch in the middle of August? What has he been doing all summer?

Under current circumstances with Luciano Becchio and Davide Somma both out injured, Billy Paynter unable to find his shooting boots and Ross McCormack lacking the telescopic legs required to pluck Leeds’ long balls out of the air, you can’t help but think there’s a place in this team for the Finnish international?

62 Responses

  1. Roam Hamilton

    Is he past it? That’s the real question and I don’t know how many times I’ve hyped up a signing only to eat my words not long afterwards!

  2. Mikelufc

    Is that pic the best you could come up with or is it typical?
    He looks like he is about to cry because somebody tripped him up!
    He looks like a right maungy bugger.

  3. Ron Galea

    Is he our Kevin Phillips? I very much doubt it, but let the loan-free-reject merry-go-round begin for 2011. Any thoughts on Keogh? He never seemed to light up stadiums, but we are desperately short up front.

  4. Hmmm

    He had one decent season for Birmingham years ago….certainly no '1 in 3 striker'. Would be a poor signing.

    • MRM

      Sorry but stats clearly state he's a 1 in 3, as near as damn it, striker at International level (25 goals in 76 games)

      • Hmmm

        Healy was a decent international striker too……. We're more interested in how many he's banged in at club level and it's far from 1 in 3. His record can only be described as PANTS…..66 goals in 259 appearances.

  5. Neil

    66 in 259 is 1 in 4, not great, more like a decent midfielder than a striker. If he can do that for Leeds that would be about 10-11 goals a season. Problem is, is that he's 30 and went to Hannover at age 26, and only scored 7 goals in 44 games, that is 1 in 6, which for a striker is terrible, and it also begs the question why has he only played 44 games in 4 years? That is on 11 a year, which can't be more than 1 game every 4. He must be washed up.

    • TSS

      Technically, he's a 1 in 4 striker in terms of league games throughout the divisions, but you have to put the stats into context rather than rely on Wikipedia like I suspect many have.

      Here's how I came to the 1 in 3 number

      Luckily, in this instance, Forssell has a record on Soccerbase. (Most players we sign don't, so there's a lot of legwork involved getting more detailed stats)

      As you can see from there, he's scored 59 goals in 145 starts and 82 sub appearances. I always think it's important to consider how many times a player comes on from the bench, because even the best strikers' records can look rubbish if they're coming on for 10 minutes at the end and people publish stats that give the same value (1) to a 10 minute appearance as they do a 90 minute one.

      59 goals in 145 starts is 0.4. Add in the sub appearances as a more realistic value than 1 (an additional 10 minutes x 82, so they total roughly 9-10 full 90 games, but let's go mad and say 15-20) and you're looking at 1 in 3.

  6. Carl Pearson

    Jesus wept he is on trial if he is shite we don't sign him simple we got the other lad koegh for now see how he goes eh ? Let's just get behind em get some points on the board fks sake getting mega monotonous now this negative stuff this keeps going on we will be in deep shit !

  7. COL

    Too good to be true? Not really!
    He'll probably have an extended trial, Leeds will want to sign him, he will want to sign for Leeds, he will pass a medical……………….. and then fail to agree personal terms and move to another championship club!!
    Mikael Forssell has had a wasted career. He looked a hot prospect when he burst onto the scene as a younster,. Sadly for him, injuries have buggered him. His record in recent years doesn't exactly look impressive. I think the prospects of us signing him are slim.

  8. leeds_lad

    Exactly what does "on trial" mean at Leeds ,,,, exactly nothing. All we shall do is alert other clubs if he is fit, and "hey presto" , no deal. Urgently , sign him, or dump him.

  9. Dave Richardson

    Did Grayson simply mis-hear someone say that Forrsell was a Finnsh(er) and thought, "he's the answer to all our problems…this week." Sorry…pretty lame. Interestingly enough, we've been through these trials a lot in recent years. Understandable given our plight. However, just playing devil's advocate, what if, and it's a big what if, but really, what if Papa Douchebag has got it right? What if the entire arse is about to fall out of the transfer market and the once greedy footballer has to settle for less. How attractive would Super Leeds United be at that point? The 80 year old fool may prove to be as smart as he thinks he is if his premonitions come true. And how thankful might we be at that point. Just sayin'.

    • COL

      No offence mate, but what a load of crap. If football is about to go into financial melt-down then what would be the point of spending 7 million quid on a load of corperate boxes that nobody is gonna use?
      Wake up!!! Bates is just a greedy scum-bag, who isn't to be trusted.

  10. henry_v

    I read somewhere he has been on trial at West ham but failed a medical.
    Two dodgy knees. Or Diogenes 'the greek cynic philosopher'. Must
    have been a Leeds fan!
    We have talked about Simon's budget but we do not know how much he has to spend.
    Maybe he still has a chunk left, but is saving it for 'loanee' Premiership players wages?
    The next few weeks will be make or break for all of us.

  11. lufcboy

    He has got to be better than Paynter – shit I'm better than Paynter and I can't play football….:)

  12. Unckle K

    Six goals in six Euro2012 qualifer matches for Finland? I wouldn't say that's a goalscoring record of someone who is past it. If his knees hold up, he'll be one heck of a signing.

  13. YorkshiremanInDublin

    @ henry v – according to a post from Tare (in yesterday's article about Keogh) he didn't fail the medical at West Ham. Tare reckons it was reported in 'a Finnish tabloid' that some Hammers strikers were supposed to move on to allow them to sign Forssell, but they couldn't get shut of said strikers so Forssell decided to move on. Not sure which angle to believe, especially if Finnish tabloids are as reliable as the UK ones ;-) If he's fit though I reckon we should sign him. At this late stage we're gonna be hard pushed to come across a player with such a proven goal scoring record. Even if he is movingn towards the latter stages of his career, and 30 is by no means past it anyway now is it, I reckon Forssell could easily weigh-in with double figures over the course of a Champioship season. Our squad if wafer-thin like cheap Tesco ham and it's getting late!

    • Bluesman

      I think that we should get Teddy Sherringham, he's not passed it either. lol

      • YorkshiremanInDublin

        Save on transport costs anyway, he's probably got a bus pass by now ;-)

  14. YorkshiremanInDublin

    It's also kind of interesting that Forssell was the only trialist to be specifically named and focussed upon in an article on the official site yesterday. Given the usual LUFC cloak-and-dagger way of going about these matters then am I reading too much between the lines in thinking that this suggests a signing is imminent? He's been training with us for a little while now if I'm not mistaken, so if he was doing sh**e or there were obvious problems with his fitness why would they explicitly focus on him in that article?

    • Craig

      I think the reason the site mentioned him is to try and quell some of the anger at our lack of transfer activity. They chose to publicise Forssell because he's the only name the fans will have heard of.

      • YorkshiremanInDublin

        Yup, that thought had crossed my mind too, sadly…I have my pessimism filters turned-up full at the minute though cos there's already enough negativity clouding the club without me adding to it I reckon! 3 points tonight is BADLY needed, and tonight I also think we need to save the (deserved and needed) 'Bates Out' chants and banners etc until after the match has finished and concentrate totally on our team on the pitch during the 90! Win or lose, the 90 minutes has to be for our lads and our lads only!

      • mikelufc

        Good thinking, you are getting to be as bad a cynic as me.

      • YorkshiremanInDublin

        I am, and I'm watching you right now on one of my surveillance screens so behave yourself ok ;-)

  15. mattbb1

    TSS youre probably ight, there is something amiss if hes prepared to play for £1k a week in the 2nd division and go through a trial first. I suspect his best days are behind him. I'd probably rather take a punt on be honest.

  16. Bubionwhite

    Prefer Andy Keogh … much younger, more mobile and is more likely to slot into the team easily. Lets wait and see how McCormack and Keogh gel and it won't be that long before Becchio's return … however if SG manages to farm out / sell Paynter and Grella then he has to be worth a punt … if he's fully fit.

    • YorkshiremanInDublin

      Totally agree. Despite Forssell having had a resonably impressive career the signing of Keogh could prove to be the big one, younger, fitter and hungrier. Howver, I'd take Forssell over both Paynter and/or Grella…SG would probably (inexplicably) sooner offload Grella than Paynter, but for me it should be the other way round…Billy has been given ample opportunity to prove himself and hasn't, whereas I think Grella has a point to prove amnd unlike Billy hasn't really been given a (deserved) opportunity to prove it. In short, Paynter out, Forssell in, but despite what SG decides to do, until Becchio and Somma return the most important thing is gonna be the Keogh / McCormack pairing. I think if (hopefully when) these two gel we might really have something, probably with Ross bagging most of the goals and Keogh as his sidekick…picking up a few himself too hopefully, but I'd see the main goalscorer in the pair as being McCormack.

  17. Mark

    Would rather Grayson concentrated on bringing in a left back and a right back (preferably under 30 years of age and still able to run quite quickly) and another central midfielder (same criteria).
    Really disillusioned when i read Leeds had brought Keogh in on loan, (what happened to the "we will only bring in players that will improve the squad" philosophy) and feel exactly the same about Forssell. Average goalscoring record across his entire career, awful playing and scoring record over the last 4 years in particular. By what possible measure then would he be a good signing or improve the squad.
    It pains me to see Grayson scrabbling around the loan and free transfer market just a couple of games into the new season. A couple of weeks ago Grayson was bleating on about being happy with the players he had, good cover in forward positions etc etc etc, a couple of games later and most Leeds supporters can see how flawed that judgement was.
    Grayson can bring in another dozen strikers (reminds me of Blackwell) for all the use they will be. If he doesnt sort the defence out quickly, (that we were all lead to believe was the priority this summer) i.e. bring in a couple of decent full backs, a quick and mobile centre half and another central midfielder it wont make a jot of difference to how our season pans out. A poor defence cost Leeds a crack at the playoffs last season, it will cost the club exactly the same this season too.

  18. ErniW

    Yes he only scored 7 goals in 44 appearances in Germany but my worry is that it took him three years to achieve that. Thats less than 15 appearances a season and 2.33 goals a season. I suspect this guy is now a crock at 30. West Ham rejected him in quick time as well.

  19. YorkshiremanInDublin

    Meanwhile, in a different univesrse entirely, after losing out to LA Galaxy in a bid to sign Robbie Keane Leicester are reported to be gearing up to make a £3million bid for a certain Mr. Jermaine Beckford. Keywords here are 'Leicester', 'Keane' and 'Beckford'…compared to 'Leeds', 'Keogh' and 'Forssell'. Ouch!!!

  20. Mark__R

    It's all propaganda.

    The next 90 minutes is the only thing that matters.


  21. Tare

    Well some coments heard about "Miklu" (nickname!), maybe I clarify some things. Miklu is an forward who has the technical skills to pass anybody in one on one situations (in the box). Both feet are excellent and change of pace within few yards is ouick enough. But what he really needs is the King Pin (n:"10") with foootball brains to feed him.

    Miklu has been injured last time in Germany but a lot of water has gone under the water since that. Now he has been training full 6 months (no vacation since then) and believe me guys this guy is a workaholic with soccer practises. His daily routine for soccer is that trainings with the club + few hours of do it for yourself practice with ball. This guy lives and breath soccer life. Point.

    If LU would like to invest in this guy it would not be an gamble (MHO). But what is the budget I just wonder????


      • YorkshiremanInDublin

        Few too many £££s there Tare, this is Ken Bates' territory bro, you'll have to waive your usual agent's percentage and make do with half a tray of over-priced and under-filled LUFC ham sandwiches left-over from from an underbooked ER corporate event a couple of days back ;-)

      • Tare

        I know this from Miklus comments in Finnish media that he only loves to play soccer, never mind the consequences. I do not find this issue regarding money but to play in a club where his ambitions is respected.


      • Tare

        Miklu is a terrific player if one is believing in him. He has the eye for the goal and cunny way of dealing with other players in the box. I just wonder that his "trial" news was published in the Official Site so what was the outcome of that? Tare

  22. scarboroughwhite

    Leicester….quickly becoming the home for players sold/missed by Leeds

    • YorkshiremanInDublin

      Yup, the fact that both Keane and Beckford used to wear the Leeds shirt makes it even more painful. Let's face it though, we couldn't afford either the sign on fees or wages of either right now so Keogh and Forssell and Luz are about the best we can hope for in the current situation and at this late window stage. Sad but true…and I actually think Keogh in particular may well prove to be a very astute (loan) signing, Forssell is worth a punt if we offload Billy, and Luz? No idea whatsoever tbh :-) Unfortunately though SG will probably (mistakenly) let Grella go and keep Paynter…should be the other way round IMO.

  23. Craig

    Should have signed Kevin Phillips when he was on free, knocking on a bit, but still knows how to bang them in

  24. pabs1983

    i love the irony, we chant get the chelsea out of leeds, and we look to bring in another chelsea player

  25. felix slackbladder

    I tell you now for a fact that Forssell will not sign for Leeds. Thats assuming he still has it in him to play at this level. WAGES!! Leeds/Bates conference league wage structure will prevent his signing. I commend your pessimism mind TSS.

  26. scarboroughwhite

    If anyone is looking for something sickening to read, something which might rub salt into the wounds caused by Bates being the modern day Scrooge, and generally a read which will p**** most off…have a look at this and the players who were available on frees,…

    You have to wonder how many of the names on there we could have signed had we not put up a bit more money. I'm not suggesting Elmander or Larsson would have been realistic targets but there are plenty of youngsters who were clearly available or indeed some older players who would have added a bit of depth to the squad and made us a proper force.

    Having said that, I remember looking midway through last season at the number of players available on frees who had yet to secure clubs and the likes of DeMerit, Aliadiere et al would have been reasonable targets pre-Bates but now we would be lucky to even have a glimpse of these players!

    • Tare

      I have been LU dedicated fan for 39 years and never looked back. Original Four teams in modern day British football were Leeds United, Liverpool, Arsenal and you know who. This club of ours will definitely come back to PL sooner or later. KB will be gone sooner or later alias what do we do then? Deep pocket money from anonymous investors for the lot?


  27. normangunston

    I don't share your enthusiasm TSS. Class prospect about 10 years ago, but never really progressed. I'd take him in a straight swap for Paynter, but that's not saying all that much.

  28. Kopa

    Forssell is a good enough striker – even at international level – when he is fit and injury free. He probably hasn't been signed yet by any club since he tries to get as good contract as possible. He himself still believes that he could play at high level. For example, there was an offer from Austria some time ago, but he neglected it because his salary would have dropped.

  29. Tare

    News from the Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat 19082011 (Helsinki News, "The Times of Finland) says that Miklu is negotiating with LU in a good spirit. He just want to play soccer in a big club. Let us hope for the best outcome of this, fingers crossed!


  30. Simon johnso

    I think he would be a great signing. He still
    Has great feet I saw him play against holland
    In a recent euro qualifier and he scored and was
    Best player on pitch. He isn’t perfect he has had injuries
    But he is still fit enough will defo get double figures. If
    He hadn’t had injuries he would be still playing at top
    Prem club, which we are not so gave to be realistic.
    I just hope we sign him, west ham signed John Carew
    Instead it wasn’t that he failed a medical so we need to
    Hurry up other clubs are interested from what I have read !!

  31. John Thorner

    I bet we won’t sign him, csn you imagine him and Andy Keogh up front one’s to old and t’other to stupid lol


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