We all know Leeds have been through a rough patch recently. Current good form has illuminated the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel but the dark times are all too memorable for everyone still watching at Elland Road.

The managers who oversaw our fall from grace had to make-do by patching up the squad with loan signings from other sides given the lack of funds in the coffers. Some successful ones stand out, think Dougie Freedman or Sam Sodje but there are so many that you simply wouldn’t believe pulled on our beloved kit. Here are the Top 10 since Premiership relegation:

1. Alan Wright, 2006, 1 appearance.

He was 5ft 4in, had a shiny bald head and appeared in 4-0 defeat to Stoke City the year we fell from the Championship, putting in a dire shift at left back before getting injured. Possibly the most forgetful Leeds United career of all time.

2. Liam Dickinson, 2009, 9 appearances.

Signed on an emergency loan from Derby in 2009 when the side were chasing promotion. And he was abysmal. Despite being known for his prolific goalscoring record in the lower leagues, Liam makes our beloved Barn-door Billy look like Pele. Lazy, uninterested and inevitably goalless, he was abysmal from start to finish.

3. Wayne Andrews, 2007, 2 appearances.

Another name that has any Leeds fan hanging their head in shame at the low depths to which the club had to swoop. Never anything more than an average journeyman during his heyday, Wayne signed for Dennis Wise to solve a striker shortage. A man who had the turning circle of an oil tanker and trapped it further than he kicked it, Andrews was never going to fit in with the mighty Leeds.

4. Graham Stack, 2006/07, 12 appearances.

Another Wise signing, he joined for 3 months to replace Neil Sullivan who mysteriously fell out of favour. Anyone who saw Graham’s goalkeeping ability would have realised why Leeds were sliding so quickly towards League 1’s trapdoor whilst the player himself seems to have spent the rest of the career wallowing around the Football Leagues signing for clubs on loan.

5. Armando Sa, 2007, 11 appearances.

When the news broke that Leeds had signed an international from La Liga, spirits soared as to which superstar this could. Unfortunately, Armando Sa was a man who had won 23 caps for Mozambique that no-one had ever heard of. African footballer of the year he was not, indeed he induced a unpleasant nostalgic moment on all fans lucky enough to witness the last foreign international to come through the door at Elland Road. Roque Junior.

6. Leandre Griffit, 2005, 1 appearance.

Given that back in 2005, Leeds were busy splashing cash on Sean Gregan and David Healy, it seems strange this anomaly appeared from the loan market. Signed from Southamapton, anyone who remembers his solitary substitute appearance against Derby has serious memory tekkers.

7. Stephen O’Halloran, 2008, 0 appearances.

This may seem slightly harsh given that he was injured in the warm up against Swindon back in 2008, but would Stephen have been any good? Given our loan previous, probably not.

8. Danny Graham, 2006, 3 appearances.

You wouldn’t believe the man scoring the goals to give Swansea a fighting chance in the Premier League once appeared in a white shirt not so long ago. Middlesbrough sent him down to the Championship to gain some experience, but he was highly disappointing, showing absolutely none of the goalscoring form that he has displayed post-Leeds United.

9. Gary McSheffrey, 2010, 10 appearances.

Big things were expected of the winger Coventry fans once called ‘Sheffchenko.’ Maybe that was in recognition of the Ukrainian’s form at Chelsea. Though McSheffrey was by no means the worst in terms of ability to come through the turnstile that was the home dressing room, he is not so fondly remembered by Leeds fans. Failing to live up to the hype is one thing, but slagging off the club for not signing him after was another. I’ve got news for you Gary, you were awful.

10. Jemal Johnson, 2007, 5 appearances.

Signed from Wolves in 2007, Jemal endured a frustrating time at Elland Road. Lacking the ability to really make the first team, he spent most of the time on the bench. Rather like Shaun Wright-Phillips or Theo Walcott, he was rather pacy but lacked anything that even resembled a final ball. An England call up beckons then.

A special mention to all those goalkeepers who come out on loan to provide backup to a potentially injured first teamer, sit on the bench once, then return to their parent clubs. Officially known as ‘the Tony Warner role.’

Written by Tom Mordey

21 Responses

  1. EW

    Surprised none of the French Foreign Legion signed by Peter Reid in his ‘grasping at straws’ period made the list. Cyril Chapuis springs to mins. One substitute appearance so forgettable that he was packed off back to France in the next couple of days. Nice one Cyril didnt apply here.

    • Horace

      Dont forget Roberto Carlos’ understudy, from Real Madrid the mighty left back Raul Bravo.

      Roque Junior was equally bad


      • Tyler75

        More astonishing as to how poor Raul Bravo was at Leeds, is that he actually went on to play regularly at centre-half when he went back to Real – this was in the real universe, not a parallel one !

  2. Arthur Graham

    I expect this is a bit before yours and tss’ time back in the days when a young Gary Speed was still gracing the Elland Rd turf and we were where should be in the Premiership having not long been league champs under Wilko. Wilko short of strikers through injurys and suspension (and of course Brian Deane being less than prolific) he brought back Lee Chapman on loan from West Ham. Chapman got sent off in his first game and spent the rest of his reunion period suspended.

  3. Gryff

    McSheffrey really wasn’t that bad. Slagging the club off I lost any respect for him, but he did a decent job for us when he was on loan.

    Like EW said surprised some of our relegation season lads like Roque Junior or Cyril Chapuis.

    Even though Marlong King is a decent player, given his performances maybe him too?

  4. number1inyorkshire

    all those that grayson signed aside from lichaj ,mc carthy , gradel when he was on loan ..

    the rest have added nothing to the side

  5. Paddy1992

    I shudder just looking at this list!!! But here are a few more who could have made it. Trundle, carl Dickinson, lowrey, de vries, vokes, and many many more. Funny how most of these are pathetic Grayson signings.

  6. Tom Mordey

    The French Legion would have all been there or thereabouts if the list had included Premiership signings. Indeed Roque would have been the stand out selection.

  7. Paddy1992

    I shudder just looking at this list!!! But here are a few more who could have made it. Trundle, carl Dickinson, lowrey, de vries, vokes, and many many more. Funny how most of these are pathetic Grayson signings.

  8. jonlufc

    Surely Mansour Assoumani has to be on the list somewhere… Who can forget his calamatous 45 Minutes at Stadium MK

  9. stephen

    Mansour Assoumani was signed on a 1 month contract therefore not a Loanee but I remember his average 45 minutes at MK

  10. Matthew

    Barry Bannan for me.

    Skillful player, just too lightweight and at times selfish with the ball, didn’t fit well with our team and way of playing.

  11. Jim Cranley

    Would mr rush and mr hateley be classed as loan or were they pay as you play free agents? Either way with a combined age of 246 they were not a good move

  12. Robert Holmes

    Adam Johnson… I was at all 3 of his games, I don’t even recall him signing!


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