After The Scratching Shed reported on a sharp drop in the odds of Neil Warnock becoming next Leeds United manager yesterday, there was a massive scramble as people tried to figure out what had caused such a significant, and almost instantaneous change.

We were contacted by a couple of usually “in the know” types, who themselves seemed to have been caught off-guard by the events, asking if we had any explanation but all we’d done was stumble across the odds as they were free-falling. This was so out-of-the-blue that no one had tweeted, emailed or posted on the site itself to point it out to us – which in itself, is extremely unusual.

Within a couple of hours, the general rumours of sightings at Thorp Arch, Elland Road and various Leeds city centre hotels started doing the rounds, but there was no concrete proof whatsoever. The bookies themselves explained that the change was as a result of “mega money” being placed on Warnock, but even they seemed unsure as to the actual reasoning behind it.

All this left for mere speculation. Working with the facts we had, the only reasonable theory was that someone had inside knowledge or that Warnock’s comments that he wanted “one more promotion” to break the record had resulted in a flurry of bets. Considering how far the odds had fallen, and how quickly it had all happened, the latter was somewhat hard to believe. After all, Keith Curle – one of Warnock’s backroom staff – was spotted at Elland Road last week and that didn’t have the slightest effect on the odds – a flurry of £10 bets from ill-informed fans working on speculation makes little difference.

Neil Warnock meeting with Ken Bates and Shaun Harvey

It wasn’t until around 11pm last night that things became clear, when The Sun and The Daily Mail both posted pictures of Neil Warnock meeting with Ken Bates and Shaun Harvey at Casino Square in Monaco. By this point, odds had dropped as low as 1/10 with some bookmakers closing the market completely.

Knowing that Neil Warnock is the man Ken Bates wants led many fans to conclude it’s a nailed on certainty, and it most probably is. However, it’s worth considering that Neil Warnock holds all the aces in this game. He’ll have other offers between now and next season, this isn’t a case of “we’re Leeds United, we get who we want” as Ken Bates would have you believe.

Leeds will have to convince Warnock that his record-breaking 8th promotion dreams are achievable at Elland Road and that may be easier said than done.

The problem is, Ken Bates will have a hard time convincing Neil Warnock that a £12.5m player budget – that he seems intent on cutting – is enough to battle it out with the big boys in the Championship. I sincerely doubt Warnock will be at all willing to work with the current player recruitment setup of Gwyn Williams finding the “talent” and Shaun Harvey dealing (or failing to deal) with contracts, and then there’s the clubs policy of selling key players – assurances that he can keep the likes of Aidy White and Robert Snodgrass will no doubt be sought.

This isn’t the Leeds United it once was. Where once you heard the name and pictured a club with huge resources, able to take their pick of players and retain the best of the ones they had without issue, we’re now more of an ‘also ran’, here to make the numbers up and where players are only valued as saleable commodities.

It’s certainly a challenging situation, and to give Warnock his dues, he’s never shied away from one, but there will be easier jobs out there and if this is to be his final bow, then I wouldn’t blame him for taking an easier role elsewhere.

76 Responses

  1. Col

    Bates appoint decent manage and back him with decent transfer budget. Don’t believe it. Sure Redfearn will be next boss.

  2. CasWhite

    Good news if this happens. Wasn’t the first name on my list but will get behind him now. Also like how he’s nominated Blackwell for the Hudders job!!!

  3. CraigSweaton

    Best man for the job and not a man easily bullied by the chairman.
    I just can’t see it happening when there are better jobs out there, and by better I mean less financial constraint and less board interference.

  4. dess

    Still can’t see this happening. Ok so they met to talk about it but can’t see them working together.

  5. Armoured Farmer

    If and it’s a big IF B**es is willing to shut it & listen then I think then I think it could be a done deal.We mustn’t forget that Warnock has yards of experience and B**es has never had to deal with a manager of such pedigree. I think all the stumbling blocks will be are those listed in the original story above.But I think that they can be worked out fingers crossed. I’ll be looking forward to seeing Warnock on the touchline @ the West Ham game next month M.O.T.

  6. trueyorxman

    A man with fire in is belly, just what is needed. Warnocks already called us one of the top 6 clubs in the country, maybe a little bit out at this precise moment in time to be fair. This guy WANTS the job more than any other because he understands what Leeds United and its support is all about. Sergeant Warnocks Barmy Army!! We still dont want to get promoted this time around. Like Wilko he’s got time now to build his own squad for the big push next season (Shaun Derry to be our new Gordon Strachan!), fingers crossed.

  7. jaffaessex

    I’m sure the initial deal will only be until the end of the season, which may well suit Bates (cheap) and Warnock (he may think promotion is achievable with this squad).

  8. NewburyWhite

    I initially thought, I don’t want Warnock. but after climbing out of my Leeds clouds and realising, that we are striving to get back amongst the other big teams. I now think yes I like the idea of a proven man to get us up. He will come to Leeds as he sees it as a chance to awaken the sleeping giant. He will also not be dictated too by Bates. I would like to see him bring Derry back as well. MOT

  9. TimPM

    That pic looks photoshopped.

    Know it isn’t, I saw another as well. Just looks it!

  10. number1inyorkshire

    to be honest i don’t think us the fans wanted any of the names in the frame .

    its almost as poisoned as the England managers job with Bates in charge ,but it seems that Warnock is the next manager at leeds .he says all sorts he likes his opinions to be aired and he has said stuff about Leeds in the past .

    his record of wins ratio is not as good as others but he will be top man for promotions when he takes LEEDS up and he will .

    He will be passionate in his job and he will give it is all to get Leeds up ,it will not be this season it will be next, unless a play off place is achieved and than its a lottery, he will asses the squad ,he will get rid of some and will bring some in and i bet he will be on some good money himself .

    This is a gamble for Warnock too we have to remember leeds will be arguably his biggest team and he will not have had pressure of us the fans and Bates before .

    That said is record of promotions is fantastic his record of relegations would be as good had he not been sacked or whatever when he gets his teams up thats my worry what happens when he gets us up .

    i welcome him if nothing it will be a roller coaster him and Bates writing in the same programme will make £4 a snip and he will get us up

    JUST on the photo it will have been taken from a distance away, if anything by a member of the public on a smaller camera and will have been manipulated etc to get it in the papers ,which do not do pics any good anyway so it is real ..

  11. OxfordWhite

    I would like Warnock, right face for the state we are in BUT all this picture proves is he’s talking/ being interviewed, not offered or accepted….

  12. WIll23

    TSS said: “This isn’t the Leeds United it once was.”

    Agreed, but that “once” was only for a very short period of our history: 10 years of Revie success, three years with Wilko, and well, not sure DOL was a “success” as the short-lived joy was all bought on a maxed out credit card from which we are still suffering 10 years later.

  13. WIll23

    Warnock? – thumbs up if it happens.

    Knows what he is doing…unlike some managers I could name! ;-P

  14. exiledindevon

    As far asIi am concerned Warnock is the only man for the job..Always has been. But seeing as supporting Leeds United is an “emotional rollercoaster” it no doubt won’t happen.

  15. WIll23

    And Grayson is linked with Huddersfield in the YP this morning. He would be inheriting a decent team but with no defence and £8m losses in last two years funding by their owner.

    It just goes to show that financial backing does not necessarily lead to promotions. This is not to support Bates btw…just to provide a perspective that Grayson’s troubles were not financial, but rather were on the pitch.

  16. Dje

    Bizarre that it is only to the end of the season and heavily incentivised to us getting promotion. Warnock isn’t in it for the quick fix money, surely? more the record of promotions. There’s the option to extend the contract is BOTH parties agree, but I’d have thought Warnock would have wanted guarantees that he’d be the man still in charge if Leeds did get promoted – considering he has so far a career that shows he has failed to keep teams in the Premiership (which must grate with his ego!).

    If he is meeting the players before todays match then I expect a dramatic improvement in our performance – with eleven players all out to impress the ‘new gaffer’. It certainly makes it more of an interesting match today.

      • Dje

        @henrymouni It’s just nice being able to think about the football on the field once more. I know you’ll never convince all Leeds fans that Warnock is one of few relevant candidates open to us, but for 14 matches and considering the backward direction we were heading, it is a worthy gamble.

      • henrymouni


        I am really excited!!

        It has been a horrible few weeks (& months) but now we have a driven man. A wild jumping bean on the touchline.

        He will bring in some loanees to pull the team together (I hope).

        Onward and upward Dje!

        “Some–where, over the rainbow………”

      • Dje

        @henrymouni Yeah, I’m actually looking forward to the post-match rants and the touchline bans. I know it isn’t ‘professional’ but it adds passion and at the very least entertainment. We’ve missed that for a long time.

    • jimmyoneeye


      Yeah i agree a bit bizarre, he will only have 14 games after today to get us back into top 6, its likley he will have to win 9 or 10 of them, its a big ask. Would have thought he would have asked for next season in the contract too.

      • Dje

        @jimmyoneeye One of the positives to be taken from his decision to sign until the end of the season, and considering Keith Curle has been monitoring our club and the transfer window is now shut, is that he must feel that we have enough quality in our squad to take us up. You look at Lonergen, Lees, White, Snodgrass, McCormack, Becchio, and Clayton and individually you would say they are playoff Championship level at least. That’s not bad for starters for a new manager and a new style of play and set-up (Redfearn really didn’t alter Grayson’s set-up much, and his style of keeping it simple and a clean sheet at least back-fired). It’ll be interesting to see if he has some loan connections or unconnected freebies lined up (both of which will delight Ken!).

      • jimmyoneeye


        Yeah good point, looks like the YP got it wrong, contract is til end of next season

    • CraigSweaton

      @Dje It actually says on the Lufc website that it’s until the end of 2012/13 season… not the end of this season?!

  17. henrymouni

    Good news I think!!

    Official announcement today!!

    He will meet the players before the game!

    That will be fun!!

    Hope springs eternal!!

  18. exiledindevon

    Great news.

    Two things I don’t understand though; why only till the end of the season and why is Redfearn in charge for today’s match ?

    No doubt chairman knobcheese only wants to do it on the cheap then at the end of the season get rid of Warnock and bring in some unproven ex Chelsea person on the cheap…….

    Can’t help being a cynic.

      • Dje

        @number1inyorkshire @exiledindevon You sure No.1 – I read it as the end of this season and with the option of next season too. But I hope you are right.

      • number1inyorkshire

        @Dje @exiledindevon just checked on official site 2012/13 season til end off. we are in 2011/12 season

    • Dje

      @exiledindevon Mixed in with the cynic answer to the first question I figure it is because Warnock’s short term contract is heavily incentivised to us getting promoted – so that’ll be cheap on his wages til then and cheap too if we fail.

      It’s too short notice to drop Warnock in to manage today. Imagine if he came in and we got beat 3-0. The fans would turn on him before he’d even learnt the players names. I’m glad Redfearn is staying with us and returning to his reserves and acadamy post – as he was doing good there and no need to cut that just because he didn’t prosper in the top position.

      • TimPM

        @Dje @exiledindevon Agree with you on dropping Warnock in today. He’s there now so the players are going to be as motivated now as in 99% of the matches they’ve ever played. They’re playing for a future at their current club now – and Redfearn knows how the team operates.

  19. number1inyorkshire

    great for leeds united for a change signed til end of NEXT season but means they can part

    ways or sign again to be honest contracts in football are worth ZERO .

    ask all the out of work managers and players .

    good news for leeds united

  20. Bluesman

    A good appointment and Leeds fans will hate to love him, but it will happen! Honest, passionate, professional (sometimes), experienced and skillful. He will give his all, I am sure of that! Let’s see what he can do. In my view he was the best candidate and the safest and look at all the fun ahead of us! Welcome Neil and Best Wishes! I even want to say something nice about Papa Smurf, but that will have to wait!

  21. exiledindevon

    Please don’t say anything nice about chairman Knobcheese. So far today is good……..

  22. WIll23

    The vast majority of sane Leeds fans will support this appointment as the rational one and will get behind him.

    Rome was not built in a day as they say and the psychological ruins left behind by Grayson in the squad (based on Lorimer’s comments – a viewpoint which anyone with a pair of eyes & brain could agree with) will probably require a lot of Warnock’s proven man management skills to repair harmony in the dressing room.

    I still think many fans underestimate how bad things were under Grayson, excusing him becasue he was a Leeds fan from Yorkshire, one of our own. But thankfully, Warnock hates us! Thank god for that!

    May an ex-player or Leeds fan never grace the managerial hotseat EVER again.

    Neil will give us results. Boring 1-0 victories. About time.

    • number1inyorkshire

      @WIll23 no one could accuse Warnock of been a leeds fan lol .

      that is fantastic news for leeds .

      he will get leeds up to spite us oh and receive his mega bonus

  23. number1inyorkshire

    leeds have appointed i believe 1 of the biggest names in uk football ,it is Warnocks biggest appointment and his biggest challenge .

    he will be good for leeds united and i welcome this for what it is ,

    we need now to get behind the manager and his new staff and keep pressure on the lot above him .

    it is now time for leeds united to make a move to get it back in the top flight if it has any ambition today is the day its starts .

    welcome to warnock you are joining a club with a tremendous history with a big past you have to deliver a bigger future .with it comes us the Fans who are loyal and knowledgeable and opinionated we will get behind you and remind you from time to time we are here ,

  24. robinhood white

    warnock,s appointment is the best thing bates has done at the club in my opinion i carnt help but think we still have a chance of the play offs with him calling the shots much has been said or writted about the atmosphere at elland road this season maybe the time has come to unite in the stands and be the extra man on the pitch give warnock and the team our support forget bates and his bandwagon for a while were still in it this season come on leeds mot

  25. mattbb1

    as kevin blackwell said on sky sports news – tlak is cheap – bates needs to properly back warnock.

  26. Bubionwhite

    NW would certainly not be my choice and I have posted several comments to that effect … however, now that it’s been confirmed, perhaps the time has come for us ALL to get behind him and the team and see where it leads us. If he can manage to squeeze a bit more effort and commitment out of some very capable players in the squad, keep KB in check and draw a few quid out of his pockets then he can have my support, and hopefully, the majority of fans, unlike MSGREEN who is already writing negative articles.

    • Col

      I completely agree with you regarding the poor article by MS Green. Articles like this very negative and do nobody any good Everybody is entitled to an opinion but Warnock is the manager, so let’s get behind him. his record speaks for itself. What do people want? Would they rather we appoint Neil Redfearn or some other novice?

    • TimPM

      @Bubionwhite I don’t think anybody other than a couple of sycophants pay attention to that pathetic blog TBH.

      It’s a one-man ego-trip as shown by him spitting his dummy out whenever he hits a hurdle with it. Like anybody disagreeing with him.

    • NorthEastLoiner

      @Bubionwhite I agree. Warnock wasn’t my preference but he’s here now and we need to get behind him and support him like we can. What it doesn’t mean though is that Bates is off the hook, we still need to get him out and LUST should keep on looking at all the options

  27. TimPM

    Apart from the fact that Warnock was head and shoulders above all other applicants (though MM wouldn’t have been the end of the world), the best part is Ken’s paying him largely in bonuses.

    Warnock is a great manager and because of that he won’t come cheap. If we get promotion, though, the rewards will be so great that we can afford those bonuses he’s looking for.

    This is a man with huge experience at getting clubs promoted. People frankly harp on about his win ratios but they forget this is a man who gets teams promoted when they shouldn’t be, and often consolidates their positions in a league above where it was reasonable for them to expect to be. That takes away from your ratios.

    If Bates doesn’t back Warnock, we’ll know about it, so we can afford to put our trust in the club for a year!

    Now, Snoddy would probably make the perfect captain for him I reckon!

  28. Tyler75

    It looks like Kenny’s serious about promotion – could it be that all this time he’s had a master plan up his sleeve or has he folded under pressure and finally realised he has to fill those new corporate facilities he’s built ? Although not my first choice, all in all I’m happy with Warnock on a contract until the end of the 2012/13 season because he’s not the man to lead us long-term into a bright new future. Bit for now we should get behind him because he’ll get us up, it won’t be pretty but it will be effective. Also look forward to seeing Derry back at ER –

    Sgt Warnock’s Barmy Army !

    • mattbb1

      well you hope so dont you, if he does change his ways then brilliant, but that remains to be seen. Warnock does deserve our support, especially if he does get us out of this sh1t of a division.

  29. Bluesman

    What is the best for Leeds United right now? It has to be the appointment of Neil Warnock!!! Never been a fan of Papa Smurf, because of the sale of good players and the lack of investment in the squad, but this appointment is good news for a change. Warnock has got my vote of confidence. If he can’t do it with the current squad this season he will make it happen next . Some people are never satisfied!! If you are not careful I threaten to say something nice about Smurf!

  30. number1inyorkshire

    you cant sit quietly and blow raspberries.

    he is not everyone,s cup of t but he is the best manager available rioght now for leeds .

    just a question colin who would you have picked???

  31. Vancouver Leeds

    I’m absolutely over the moon with NW’s appointment. Similar attributes to M.O’N & M.Mc., enthusiastic, knows the game inside out AND takes no prisoners……….are you watching Lorimer & co ? Finally, after seven years of pure hell,could this be the first small steps to a UNITED Leeds.???!! You never know, but hopefully the old ” Trans World Airline Technician” Lucifer himself may soon be exorcised from our beloved club. MOT

    • pete58

      @Vancouver Leeds Bonjour, the sun has risen in Vancouver,

      feels like a better day does it not?

      • Vancouver Leeds

        @henrymouni @pete58

        Do you lads live here in Vancouver ? If so, how could i get in touch with you . I feel awkward about using TSS’s site as a medium. By the way TSS always a thoroughly interesting and enjoyable read. The best site for miles……keep it up, me ol mucker

      • pete58

        @Vancouver Leeds @henrymouni Oh dear ,sorry no i don’t, i was just overcome by a spirit of fraternite- agree about tss though.

      • Vancouver Leeds


        3 rainbows here , just like the pot of “goals” at ER………….happy days!!

  32. CraigSweaton

    @RoystonLUFC. Of course he wants us promoted but not at the expense of buying players. I’m sure he does want us promoted so that when our threadbare team gets bummed every week, and we get relegated he can rake in the parachute payments. Open your eyes man!


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