billy bremner  statue at Elland Road (Large)Leeds United’s silence was broken yesterday as Vice Chairman Salah Nooruddin answered questions the club claimed were ‘from fans’.

Whether the questions were supposed to be a pluralisation of what Leeds United thought the fans wanted answering, or whether they’re trying to pass them off as the questions fans genuinely asked is unclear, but the whole thing read like one of Ken Bates’ Yorkshire Radio interviews with Ben Fry – clearly scripted and controlled, free from the candid nature of genuine fans questions.

It was a statement that said nothing really. Ambiguous and non-committal, exactly the kind of comments you’d expect from a club at this stage of the transfer window.

I do have some sympathy for Leeds United in that respect. Anything they say at this point in time has the potential to cause widespread panic and will be used against them later.

Had they done a proper Q&A with fans, one of the questions would have definitely been “Will you sell Sam Byram?” It’s a question with no acceptable answer, a trap which previous chairman Ken Bates fell into a couple of times. The only answer Leeds United fans want to hear is no, and at the time the question is answered, that may well be Leeds United’s intention. But what happens when Manchester City test their resolve and offer £8m? No Championship club can afford to reject such sums, Leeds United would have to sell and the answers they’d given previously would be held against them by some fans later.

Vague answers, however frustrating, are understandable. But the manner by which Leeds United broke their silence was poorly judged and badly executed. To try and pass off what is essentially the same pre-season statement we read every year as a Q&A with fans was a serious error in judgement. It fooled no one, and that Leeds United seemed to think it would is insulting.

It appears someone at Elland Road felt this approach would demonstrate the club’s willingness to communicate with fans, but it only served to highlight their failure to do so. It felt exactly like one of Ken Bates’ stunts and once again reminded us that the fans’ forum Leeds United’s owners promised still hasn’t been rescheduled.

All of this follows comments made by Brian McDermott during a charity dinner at Crowne Plaza, Leeds. Reports from people in attendance vary a fair bit, but a common theme was that McDermott didn’t have the funds to secure signings he’s arranged. A summary of alleged comments is published here.

Elsewhere today, The Guardian’s David Conn revealed that Leeds United have lent money from Brendale Holdings, a Dubai-based company where David Haigh serves as a director. The amount of money borrowed is unclear, but it appears to be a restructuring of GFH’s loans to the club and is secured against club shares.

12 Responses

  1. mrbigwheels

    I applaud your comments as the realistic base to the Clubs present position. Please give a view on David Conns revelation… if you are able to. Thank you.

    • TSS

      I think they’ve just removed the liability from GFH’s books. There’ll be some accounting reason behind it I’m sure, but I don’t think it’s anything to worry about – based on David Conn’s replies to other people anyway.

  2. henrymouni

    BBC Radio Leeds today.

    Leeds United: Brian McDermott may have to sell to buy

    Leeds United manager Brian McDermott has admitted he may have to create his own transfer fund if he is to bring in more players before the new season.

    On Thursday vice-chairman Salah Nooruddin said the board was supporting McDermott in the transfer market.

    But asked whether a fund existed, McDermott told BBC Radio Leeds: “I’m not sure.

    “We possibly have to wheel and deal to get targets in – there possibly has to be outgoings to get incomings.”

    He added: “I have my targets in place but it’s basically day to day at this moment. I haven’t lost any targets yet, but as time goes on it’s not helpful.”

  3. El Van C

    Sky Sports have some interesting comments from BM, admitting that GFH have not delivered, but his attitude is; he is here he is the manager and will crack on (we are here, we are the fans, and we should crack on and support our team, whatever it may be).
    Even if we only have a couple of signings and rely on youth and play passing football I will be happy, as it is a step in the right direction. Maybe even more exciting than buying our way up the league(s), although that is modern football. MOT – Side Before Self!

  4. mrbigwheels

    Interesting surely that the man who offered transparency, detail, a plan for the future, hope even with promises of future investment and support for improving the squad in the summer… has er… left the building. Where is Salem when you need him?.

    Dispatched to the recycle bin… Obviously.

    • henrymouni

      He is off scheming somewhere Mrb.

      He is the Scarlet Pimpernel!

  5. markman

    Presumably moving players on means getting off wage list.with a couple of exceptions there are not many who would command a fee.
    it surely then follows that any arrivals are freebies or loanees.

    • TSS

      Unless they somehow manage to raise funds in the next couple of weeks, I’d say that’s an accurate prediction.

      • Thommo Hawk

        Selling Sam Byram for anything even close to 6-8 million LUFC would be complete retards to reject that.

        You have to put it into perspective here, Sam Byram is a pretty good player who had a fantastic first season. He’ll leave at some point and probably represent England by the time he’s 26.

        But we have to look at it like this Byram will never get us promoted on his own, he’s had 1 good season and he’s an academy player right back. He could well have a minger of a second season and his value snipped in half. Or a bad injury could be all she wrote for the lad and his progress. Same end result for Leeds United.

        Nah, £ 6-8 Million now from a Prem team that’ll give him first team football is the best for all. We get a few million to reinvest into the squad and can buy some quality players in key positions for 1 right back. Plus a replacement. Better team.

  6. mick

    we have to just get on with it regardless, would love to keep the youth, esp sam byram,proper leeds. but if he has to go if the price is right,then so be it, if that means re building. think we 2/3 yrs from prem anyway,, so just hold tight , get yor glad rags on, get the lads together and get to the match, love the away days out, better than ever at mo.gr8 crack. btw anyone know why diouf and austin not in any of the pics of training?

    • henrymouni

      Austin has been with the Jamaican team so will have been given more time off.
      Not sure what Diouf has been doing, apart from getting arrested for fighting.
      roll on the start of the friendlies!!
      If we sell Sam, it is hard to know how much of the fee will be swallowed up by the debts?
      I don’t think Brian has much choice but to sell if he wants to bring in new players.
      Can’t wait for the action to start!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.