Warnock in interviewNeil Warnock spoke to journalists before the Barnsley game, talking up the teams new mentality, and the balance at the club between young and old.

Good Start

Results breed confidence and the lads are buzzing at the minute. It’s a local derby on Saturday, so form goes out of the window – bit like the Championship really – Barnsley got a good performance against Birmingham and did poorly against Peterborough.

I’m delighted how the lads have taken everything on board so far. You’ve always got a chance if you’re well organized in this league.

In fact, if Diouf had scored [his chances] against Bolton and Blackburn we’d be top of the league!

Injuries & Loans

We’ve got to look to getting points on the board here, before having a break and getting a few faces back like Norris and Green.

Paul Green’s doing some running now, but he’s not played any games yet. Norris is looking closer to returning, and I was considering bringing him on last match, but I don’t want to rush him back.

I’m also still looking at getting another face in, so the bench should look a bit better in the future.

I think we need to be able to change games, so I’m having a look at the moment. [The potential loan signing]’s not going to excite the fans, but it’s a player I’ve known and I think can do a job.

Set-piece Woes

I think our lack of knowledge and nous regarding defending set pieces has cost us. I talked to Tom Lees earlier in the season, and gave some marking to Rudy, so [after Bolton] who do I give them to now? Pearce can’t take everybody! It’s disappointing really… we talked this morning about them.

We haven’t had a clean sheet since Wolves, but Lees and Pearce have played very well in open play.

I don’t think we’ll get anywhere near the playoffs if we concede 16 goals every 8 games.


We’ve had a tough run of fixtures, and I think the next 10 games will be vital. The lads are doing as well as I expected them to do. I think they’re enjoying it too, and you forget how many are new. Think of the other night – 4 out of the back 5 are new, probably 8 overall.

My teams play better when there’s a bit extra in games I think, like in derbies. I think the lads will enjoy Barnsley; we’re used to that [derby] atmosphere, because we’ve always got 3,000-4,000 travelling with us, so I think we’ll do well.

I’d be very disappointed if we got beat 5-2 [on Saturday]. I think the whole club’s changed in the last six months, we’ve strengthened mentally now. They’ve got some threat, but we have. We’ve got players not just busting a gut to start the game, but to get on the scoresheet or keep in the team. It’s good, especially when you’ve got lads like Norris coming back.

Faces, New and Old

Tongey has helped me because he knows how I play, he’s stablised the team, taken a tough role, helped Brown come into the team, helped with Byram or White on the right side, and allowed us to get Dioufy into a free role which is his best position, because as we saw against Blackburn he can’t mark down the wing very well.

There’s one or two lads who I haven’t had a great look at, but who I will do eventually. We brought Sanchez [Payne] in the other week. I’d like to bring a few to the squad to whet their appetite. I think we surprised one or two of our academy lads in pre-season when we called Sam [Byram] up. I’m not sure everybody felt he was ready, but it worked out well.

Sam reminds me a little bit of Nathaniel Clyne [the 21 year old Southampton full-back], in that he was just never fazed by anything. In fact I remember having one or two lads earlier in my career who went on to better things, and thinking they’d panic in the playoffs, and they were the ones who were relaxed and enjoying it. So I don’t worry too much about youngsters, I think lads bring a fresh atmosphere to a changing room as well if I’m honest.

And Browny’s been good for that as well. He and Pughy have been training after sessions end to make sure they’re ready when they get their chances. It’s a good example for the kids, and I don’t think Diouf has been as fit as this in years.

And you do play better when you’re enjoying it.

26 Responses

  1. Tare

    But where is TSS anti EHD boy? Given the comments lately of this Whites Captain then show me your true colors boy. Tare

    • TSS

      When was I anti-EHD? I refused to ignore past indiscretions (he spat at fans for Christ sake, that shouldn’t be swept under the carpet), but I always said I’d give him chance to prove he’s changed.

      • Tare

        I am glad You responded here but remembering Your notes of moral issues then my comments are very thick one here. Tare

      • Kevin Scorah

        Speaking of moral issues, it was a year ago (October 29th) on this site that people were singing the praises of Jimmy Savile. I for one was doubtful of that his legacy would survive intact if the accusations surrounding his personal life ever gained plausibility. Leeds he may be, charity worker undoubtedly, but nothing should excuse his disturbing penchant for under age girls.
        I wonder if any of his fans on here are now more circumspect on their praise?

      • Tyler75

        I never wanted him anywhere near the club but he’s been exemplary and proved (maybe even to himself) that he can knuckle down and rely on his undoubted quality. Warnock has been really good for him and in many ways it reminds me of the Wilko/Vinny relationship. He’s a cut above in this division and I’ve rarely seen a better player at retaining possession under pressure.

      • Will23

        I too did not want the “sewer rat” near this club on moral grounds.

        We are only 10 games into the season and he is only signed until January so we’ll see if he can keep up his so far superb contribution to the cause and continue to behave honourably.

        He seems to be able to rise above provocation on the field, and Warnock referred to a conversation post match with Phil Neville when Neville asked what Warnock had done to Dioufy!

        So, even fellow professionals recognised the problem child that was EHD, I emphasise the past tense here, as in the present, at Elland Road, Diouf is showing his class on the field, and by all accounts, off the field as well, which is good to hear.

        It’s always good to here someone successfully overcoming their past behavioural issues, especially when people have played the victim card, though EHD was not one to go down that excuse-making route. He was just an idiot!

  2. Will23

    Warnock is not everyone’s cup of tea, and here I am thinking of a certain other blog editor, the lad whose never short of an eloquent comment or two, Mr Michael Green, who I’ve yet to read from him anything, yes anything, positive about Warnock. Maybe I am doing him an injustice, MG that is, but really, Warnock knows how to play the fans and play the players in terms of psychology. Grayson, in contrast, got lucky with what he inherited, and then proceeded to f*** it up big time, and had no motivational abilities at all.

    Grayson had no man-management skills whatsoever, actually just like my boss, who shall remain nameless, but really who is a person who has risen above his level of competence. He chats up the ladies, (no comment on SG here!) smooth talking as if his gods gift, even with the beer belly, and says one thing one second, only to change his mind one second later. His indecision is decisive. He has no respect from any employee and yet somehow has managed to hang on to his job even following on from a takeover. I suppose bullshitting is not an olympic sport, but if it was, he would be a potential gold medallist.

    Now Warnock, may be accused of bullsh*****g, but really, he calls it as it is. Grayson was always squirming, blaming others, never taking responsibility.

    You can trust Warnock. In “Grayson We Trust” was laughable while it lasted but as I say, he got lucky.

    • Chareose

      So you played under Grayson did you ? You seem to know a hell of a lot about his management style……. Well i disagree with you, i quite liked Grayson and i liked what he was trying to do at Leeds. If he had been given the support he needed he would have got us promoted to the premier league….. so thats two promotions potentially and you have the audacity to slag him off ?
      I would say overall I prefer warnock but then Neil has been around a long time and hes a wise old head….

      • Will23

        Whether you “quite liked” him or not is irrelevant to the argument.

        But when it comes to judging his managerial ability you judge on his comments and the results. Grayson needed to spend spend spend to make a team and boy what a job he did….

        Birmingham 4-0
        Forest 7-3
        Barnsley 4-1
        Blackpool 5-0

        I could go on.

        As Brown says today the team folded under Grayson’s command /leadership (sic) and when he looks around the team today he says a squad that would not fold.

        Grayson was always openly blaming his players. He rarely stood behind them in the press when the going got tough.

        Grayson inherited all his best players, other than Gradel, and that promotion from League One as as embarrassing in its manner as any in living memory of any promoted team I can recall.

        So to rephrase what you said, Grayson failed to get a promotion from the Championship after a very limp & insipid second half of the season and then almost managed to secure another limp failure from League One.

      • Chareose

        Yes that i liked him was an opinion and therefore just as “irrelevent” as your own OPINION about Grayson based on no obvious evidence or facts……..the bottom line is if hed been backed in the transfer market and his good players signed to decent contracts and competitive wages Grayson would have the best midfeild in the championship, a very good attack and therefore a very good chance of promotion…….as proven by some of our initial Championship positions…… Half way through the first season up we were 2nd and that was the time to invest but your idol Ken Bates didnt and so the momentum was lost and the train eventually de-railed….
        He Signed Mcormack, Clayton, Gradel, Johnson……brought through Howson…… The turgid signings and loan signings were down to one man and one man only……Captain fucking birdseye……. They were signed as a result of ZERO investment in transfers and wages…..
        Where is Gradel ? Where is Snodgrass ? Where is Howson ? Johnson ? Delph ?

  3. RoystonLufc

    I like Warnock. He seems to have a very clear idea what he’s doing and he’s a very good reader of both the game and of the people involved. In a lot of ways he reminds me of Wilko – he’s a hard grafter and he doesn’t depend on jumped-up prima donnas. I’m glad that talk has returned to football, rather than Bates-baiting; it’s amazing what a few good results do! My concern is what will happen if/when GFH finally sign the dotted. They could saddle us with debt (not good) or they could provide the kind of funds that causes disruption to a stable squad (slightly less not good!). Personally I’d like to stick with with what we’ve got plus two or three new faces, no more. Offer Tonge(y) and Diouf(y) longer term contracts, same for Becchio and our other, long-time faithful. I really don’t want another Ridsdale saga: I really want a steady, manageable climb back to the top through business-savvy deals and hard work, not through the open cheque book method that has proven to be the downfall of so many (including us).

    • Tare

      Maybe this issue here comes from this agent war environment; are you leading your men in front or not? Tare

  4. lincsleeds

    This is a message to WIII3. Simon Grayson managed the team he loves, he never looked to blame anybody else, always said it as he saw it, without bullshitting and was never phased by anything. Yes he made mistakes but you never know, he may be back in charge one day. Your comments make you come across as a sad, pathetic, bitter, spiteful individual. Sorry old pal but this great club doesn’t need dickheads like you for supporters. Neil warnock and the boys doing well, here’s to a good result tomorrow to hopefully put us in the mix in the playoffs.

    • Will23

      He was forever blaming his players; threatening his players indirectly in the media. Did you not listen to or word his words of wisdom? Grayson was not a leader in the true meaning of the word. He merely had the title, manager, but it did not fit well with him.

      I like to expose incompetence and present facts and make proper accurate needed judgements on people.

      I do dislike cheerleading type of fans, as well as drunk fans.

      Oh, and Grayson is not in Warnock’s class. Never will be.

      • Ron

        I just don’t think anyone on here wants to hold a grudge against Grayson. Compare manager’s at your leisure, but most people realise that Grayson was hamstrung by Bates and only a fool would think that Grayson didn’t want the best for us and the club he once played for. Let’s all move on and wish him all the best at Huddersfield. If I ever saw him out, I’d buy him a pint. It’s been a tumultous period for the club and he suffered too. I like Warnock better myself, but I’m not going to lay into Grayson as a result.

  5. Bluesman

    Warnock brings experience and a settled side. He has a great deal of nouse and a grafter. For the first time for years you can see steady improvement in the side, confidence and above all determination. The team work hard for each other and their are some fantasitic individual performance from some of our top men! Diouf has been incredible and getting better – he has a lot of talent in his locker. Diouf will blossom at Leeds. The set up and the support is just right for him. Well done to everyone though. Some really good team performances from the lads and I agree with Royston. We need one or two options from the bench and some depth, but this team can go all the way. They call it character!!

    • Will23

      Under Warnock, at last we can say we have a team and it is a long time since we’ve been able to say that.

      And as you say, Warnock has tactical nous. Something you could never accuse Grayson of! Yes, this was a deliberate provocation for certain fans here and their darling Simon! ;-)

      • TimPM

        So, basically, within a week of some bizarre schizophrenic rant at the site’s writers, and a disgusting, abusive, racist and religionist email, you’re admitting to being a troll?
        Gee, what a big man you are.

      • lsdn2e

        What a fickle bunch Leeds fans are & to judge Warnock after just a few games just shows that too many so called Whites dont engage brain before typing. Lets see what colin has achieved at the end of the season. Grayson was asked to make a 3 course dinner with a bag of crisps & a tin of soup. Bates sold the squad Grayson built….player by player & he did more for Leeds than colin will ever do. Bates Apologists so easy to please

      • RoystonLufc

        you’re so right about fickleness – look at the anti-Bates ranting that suddenly stops when we get a few good results and a glimpse of promotion. You’re right about Grayson’s hamstrung resources, but NW is up against the exact same. The problem for me is that ever since that time we sunk the scum at Old Surrey, we went down and never recovered. Our promotion – laudable though it was – was a nail-biter that shouldn’t have been, considering our dominant position before the Old Cockney game. We should have had that one in the bag five games before end of season. We scraped through and it looked like we were heading right back down. No disrespect to Larry, he rescued us and took us out of the Carlisle/Bury league; but even though NW has the same problems, I trust him to manage us better than Larry would. Ask yourself, who would you rather have in charge right now? I agree with Ron, below, and I would deffo buy Larry a pint or two if I met him in a pub – he got us promoted, after all; but he reached his limit. I hope that he gets a fantastic welcome when we play the udders, he deserves it. But now let’s move on

      • TimPM

        Perhaps you’ve forgotten to factor in that for two weeks running now Mr Bates has made it clear that he is very willing to sell the club on. Why complain when he’ll be gone soon?
        His recent programme notes were quite good too – very moderate all things considered! If the fans weren’t shown a reg rag so often I doubt relations would have plummeted so dramatically

  6. Ron

    I am racking my brain regarding this loan player, but can’t think of an obvious target. Somewhat deflated by Warnock’s thoughts that the player will not excite the fans, however it is clear that Warnock just wants an honest player until January. Survive and stay in the hunt until January. I have every faith in him and despite all the takeover nonsense, I think he’s loving the place which creates the right environment for the players and stops them worrying about the outcome.


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