Aston Villa have allowed Fabian Delph to join Leeds United on loan, with the initial deal keeping him at Elland Road until February 25th.

The news follows upset at the sale of captain Jonny Howson and Leeds will hope this announcement eases tensions after protests were held outside Elland Road last night.

Simon Grayson is due to hold a predictably tough press conference at 2pm today, where questions over the club’s ambition will likely dominate proceedings. He too will hope Delph’s capture can distract somewhat from the widespread feeling of gloom surrounding Leeds United.

It’s unlikely to change much however. A one month loan deal does not make up for the loss of another key player and calls for Ken Bates to sell up will continue on regardless.

Fabian Delph’s return could actually have the opposite effect. Fans will be reminded of the reported £6m that seemingly vanished after his 2009 sale – £6m Ken Bates claimed would secure Thorp Arch’s repurchase.

Fabian Delph joined Leeds United as a youth player in 2001, making his debut for the first team in 2006. He went on to make 46 league appearances for The Whites, scoring six times before he was sold to Aston Villa for a reported £6m in 2009.

Since then, Delph has managed just 25 Premier League appearances for Villa with injury problems halting his progress. Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish, will see the loan deal as a chance for Fabian Delph to return to match fitness.

Pub Ammo: Fabian Delph is Leeds United’s 66th loan signing since 2004. It’s a transfer philosophy that just screams long-term thinking and building towards a brighter future, I’m sure you’ll agree?

Ken Bates Quote: “Our position is very simple – Fabian Delph is not for sale, nor will he be in the future. Fabian’s going to be a Premiership player, but he’s going to be a Premiership player with Leeds” 04.11.08