Fans could be forgiven for getting excited, some have maybe become slightly obsessive. Since the news broke about a month ago that Leeds were in takeover talks, one Leeds forum alone has received an impressive 1.95 million page views on its takeover thread. Finally, the takeover looks almost finished. The buyers’ due diligence was (as LUST suggested) more advanced than Leeds’ statement suggested, and although the buyers’ trust was reportedly damaged last week, it is understood that the deal is all but done.

This autumn saw the 11-year anniversary of Rio Ferdinand’s signing for a record transfer fee of £18m. The anniversary came at a time when talented young manager Simon Grayson’s exciting young team had been dismantled and left lifeless by a visionless Leeds board. Grayson, like his young team, had a lot to learn, but the future looked bright. In December 2010 a great brace for Max Gradel meant Leeds beat QPR to go to goal-difference with 2nd place in the Championship. That summer Bradley Johnson and Neil Kilkenny were allowed to leave on the promise of better talent. Kasper Schmeichel was then ousted from the club and Max Gradel shockingly sold days before the transfer window after declaring he would sign a new contract at the club. Four young players with bags of talent had been thrown out of the club, and as Christmas 2011 came it was hard to adjust from that team, to a midfield of Pugh, Vayrynen and Brown that got destroyed 4-1 to Barnsley. As if things couldn’t get any worse, Jonny Howson was told to sign for Norwich in January and Simon Grayson paid for Ken Bates’ lack of suitable investment. Grayson could be criticised for his transfers, but how can a manager plan his acquisitions when in July he is told he has £2m less to spend than the year before, and only later (when the best targets have gone) is he allowed more to spend?

Leeds have had terrible luck, been the victims of a string of terrible decisions from their board, and have been stuck in the lower leagues while pundits unanimously explain that for the good of football and given the size of the club, we should be in the Premier League. We passed the 10 year anniversary of David O’Leary’s sacking last Wednesday. With talk of the buyout now only requiring the transfer of funds, were Leeds United the victims of a 10-year curse? And if so, who or what was behind it? Answers on a postcard please (or just comment below!)

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