It’s hard to know now who to trust in the increasingly duplicitous world that is our British Media. Throw into the mix a Chairman more cunning than Lucretia Borgia, Kim Philby & Dick Dastardly combined and matters can only get worse for Leeds supporters.

Gradually we have seen the previously ambivalent media, especially the Yorkshire Evening Post (YEP) begin to turn their gaze towards Elland Road, the scent of revolution becoming ever more pungent, with each passing rant from Chairman Ken, and each riposte from the supporters. Even the Daily Mail, revolution-averse as they may be, seem to be intent on stoking the fire of change (you know things must be really bad for them to fall in with the proletariat in a slug fest versus the landed gentry)

Sadly that same YEP, presumably in the interests of balance sees fit to give airtime to the increasingly irritating Peter Lorimer. Lone survivor of the Yorkshire Consortium, his most recent articles not only make the flesh crawl, they also turn the stomach – get your goat, grind your gears, and royally p*ss you off, and that’s just if you’re Simon Grayson.

Often not based in fact but woefully out of touch opinion, he’s the board member we’re now all bored of. The Legend we’d all like to be a myth now.

Peter for the sake of all that was once good about Leeds, for Don Revie, Billy Bremner, Allan Clarke, Mick Jones, and Paul Reaney – will you button up now please and go back to running your pub.

One can only assume he has been given this lease of journalistic life by the Bates regime to distract us all from the continued meltdown of our favourite octogenarian. His articles in the YEP of late are Smithers-esque to Bates’ Monty Burns. With all the spin of the above pictured erstwhile spokesman for the Ba’ath party in late 90’s Iraq.

Let’s review some of his most recent gems…

On Simon Graysons `enormous’ ahem.. squad & the lack of any urgency to invest in the squad from his article 3rd February.

“I was considering this the other day and worked out that there’s a full team of his players who are hardly involved, either as starters or substitutes – Paul Rachubka, Paul Connolly, Leigh Bromby, Andy O’Brien, Alex Bruce, Michael Brown, Ramon Nunez, Lloyd Sam, Billy Paynter, Mikael Forssell and Mika Vayrynen.

To anyone who thinks Leeds United don’t invest or failed to back Grayson, look at that list. You’ve got 11 experienced lads there, many of whom have been in and out at best”

Now of course if we put that team out then quite frankly the disasters and emergency committee would need to start an appeal the following Monday so grisly would the scenes of carnage be at Elland Road. And yes Simon signed those players, but Lorimer is in the box seat here, he knows

a.) Just how little finance was available to Grayson, and

b.) That this desperation meant if we had an option to buy a player for a fee, or one slightly worse for free, then a glowing resume would no doubt appear courtesy of Messrs Harvey & Williams to Bates explaining why indeed we shouldn’t spend money on Gary Hooper or Billy Sharp – but on Billy Paynter instead – “oh is he free as well Uncle Ken…? oooh how nice” we know how it goes. Of that list as The Scratching Shed has pointed out the sum total of fees is still less than most other clubs have paid for a single player in the Championship.

So just what is Lorimer trying to prove?

That Grayson was incompetent? That the board provided top quality players? Now come on Peter give us some credit…

On Jonny Howson’s exit, he is equally skewed in his view of matters, and several country miles away from what most fans perceived as the truth behind his departure to Bumpkin Land.

“Make no mistake – Jonny isn’t being forced out. The club have been trying to agree a new contract with him for months and the offer to him was a good one. But he wants to play Premier League football next season and we can’t promise him that. There’s a great chance of us winning promotion, but it’s certainly not guaranteed.”

No it’s certainly not `guaranteed’ so goes the understatement of our season. So again flying in the face of what most fans saw, that Jonny Howson was unconvinced by our levels of investment, and the management of the club.

Moreover Ben Parkers sideswipe at Lorimer (for which he should be given the freedom of the city) for seemingly putting all of this at the feet of the player revealed this to be a fallacy at best, and at worst a dreadful piece of propaganda from the Bates regime.

In Lorimer’s latest article about how Grayson had unprofessionally treated his players and left a `fractured’ dressing room, sees Lorimer refer to `several senior players’ opinions on Grayson to support this (he refers to Connolly chiefly).

Now one respondent to this article in the YEP responded almost straight away that this was a `cheap cheap shot’ against someone who couldn’t defend themselves. It paints a picture that all managers in any business dread where you have no control over your staff (in Grayson’s case players) some players like staff will inevitably go off the boil; you need support from above in dealing with them, moving them on and so forth. Bates’ eye-watering contractual constraints meant that it would be hard for Grayson to :-

a.) Terminate players contracts – logically one would assume once those monies were spent they’d come out of the fabled `war chest’ and

b.) Preclude signing a replacement..

The net result of which is he became stranded with players he no longer wanted, who no longer wanted to be there? So what kind of an atmosphere would that create? Their ability becomes immaterial then and they become a burden. This is a direct result of the inflexibility of our board, not supporting the manager – honestly – how would Fergie have coped with Paul Ince long term, or even Gordon Strachan with whom he seemingly also fell out? It’s vital for the manager to be just that – the manager, and in charge of hiring and firing… I’m forgetting of course ..

c.) If we did get a transfer fee and saved wages on moving on say – Paul Connolly – would Grayson even get that money back to spend?

We all have a great deal of sympathy with Andy O’Brien and what we’ve all recently found out about his condition, but this lack of professionalism at the club and seeming damning of Grayson in the Media is embodied in their management of this.

Literally on the eve of Grayson’s departure back into the squad comes O’Brien, recovering from depression, and lo and behold he’s joining the squad – what did Grayson have to say about that? Well nothing as it happens, as he was out the door less than 48 hours afterwards.

He seemed to shoulder the burden of being panto villain in this instance, while Bates himself had been as unequivocal about O’Brien as anyone, formally stating as far as he was concerned he refused to play for the club, and was no longer an employee as far as he was concerned. Let’s be honest no one came off well there, but for me this was a scenario where Grayson really was hung out to dry, and much like Lorimer’s most recent article these are just what the responder in the YEP stated, cheap shots at someone who isn’t (probably legally) allowed to defend themselves.

Peter Lorimer has become more and more like Comical Ali – remember him? As the US Marine Corps strolled into Baghdad, stopping to grab a McDonalds, and shoot the breeze while the republican guard turned tail and reached for their fake Turkish and Syrian passports, he told us those same GI’s were `committing suicide at the gates of Baghdad..” no one believed him of course and now no one believes a word of what you’re saying now Peter.

On the night of our play off semi final against Carlisle a player from the Revie era, perhaps our best known centre-forward, pulled up next to me in his car. I was of course rather star struck, I shook his hand, and told him what a great player I thought he was, that we could do with some class similar to his these days. I then asked him what he thought the result would be. His response? That our current predicament was `a disgrace’ that he was glad Don Revie didnt live to see it, and would be `turning in his grave’. That’s the kind of honesty Peter needs to remember, playing the blame game does a great player a disservice. And it demeans the efforts and achievements of one of our better managers who sweated blood to get us to where we are now. Perhaps not yet the Premier League, but surely better than where we were that evening against Carlisle.

Written by Matt BB