Time For True Leeds United Fans to Get Positive and Support the Club – by Rob Atkinson


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Elland Road packed with the faithful

Sometimes, a good old-fashioned cliché is the only thing to resort to, especially when things seem bleak and morale is low.  So I have a couple to offer that may help at this uneasy time when Leeds United stand on the brink of yet another new beginning and we’re all questioning what’s wrong in the club after one of the worst results in our entire history.  The two that spring to mind are “The darkest hour is the one just before the dawn” and “Let your faith keep you strong“.  There may well be others equally applicable.

The thing about clichés is that they wouldn’t be quite so hackneyed and frequently-quoted if they didn’t have that element of truth and common sense about them.  The central message of any such quotation as related to Leeds United right now must be that the club needs positive support in bad times even more than in good.  This is no time to spread despair and linger over the agony and humiliation – for such it surely is – of a defeat to an inspired but much lowlier team.  What we have to do now, as a massive collective of followers for one of the world’s most famous and fanatically-supported football clubs, is: stick with it.  Tough it out.  We’ve had bad times before, and ultimately they’ve helped make the good times even sweeter.

Rochdale was a bad experience, worst of all for the fans who made the journey and backed their men to put on a professional display for the shirts they were wearing and the badge on those shirts.  The fans that make these trips are the single most notable thing about the Leeds United of today.  They are a modern phenomenon, supporting a mediocre team with almost unfailing good humour and vociferous enthusiasm.  Fans of clubs we visit are in awe of the sheer passion these fantastic fans generate.  But clearly, any group of football followers will have a collective breaking-point.  That point was reached at Rochdale; the fans had had enough and they said so.  They expressed their anger and their pain in terms that even the most complacent and overpaid player could easily understand.  The manager was brave enough to emerge after the game and take his share.  He has expressed no disagreement, but has remained dignified and determined.  When success comes, Brian McDermott is the kind of man who will think back to yesterday at Rochdale so that he will not be carried away in the flush of achievement.  Brian is a steady man, and he will take on board the disappointment and suffering of those loyal fans.

But we’ve had our moan now.  It was a message that had to be sent out, and our representatives at Spotland duly obliged.  It’s done; let’s move on.  We stand on the brink of – quite possibly – a major upturn in the fortunes of Leeds United.  Just as efforts over the past year in team building are very much a work in progress, so the achievements behind the scenes and the changes wrought there are possibly slightly under-appreciated.  But Leeds United today as a club is a very different entity than the one labouring under the yoke of Bates’ last few months in charge.  This is something for which we should all be truly grateful.

Rochdale is gone, just as Histon disappeared into the past.  Not so long after Histon, we were winning at Man U – and this was at a time when that was quite a hard thing to do.  Rochdale will be remembered as a low point, but the highs which will follow are apt to be all the sweeter for that bitter experience.  Such are the slings and arrows of outrageous Leeds United.

Now we wait for the tangible results of all the backroom activity currently going on at the club and at the Football League.  We can justifiably wait with some excitement; the signs are good that the club is about to commence operations on a whole new level.  The FA Cup meant little to us this season, in reality.  The pride and feelings of the fans, granted.  But as a competition, it is one that we can manage without – just as long as our progress in the right direction is maintained.  That’s the cause in which we should be lending our support.  What’s about to happen might just be a massively significant time in the history of our club, and we must be seen to be behind the teams – the ones off the field as well as on it.  And we’re a team ourselves, a massive united group of fanatical supporters who all wish to be involved in the success of United.  Any team needs to pull together, and that’s just what we need to be doing, right now and going forward.

So please – put Rochdale behind you and get your chin up.  We’re Leeds and we’re proud even in those times when the team give us little reason to show that pride.  Players come and go, teams evolve.  Even management and owners aren’t forever.  But the club and the fans are bound together in perpetuity, and we must seek to go forward as a united force.

We Are Leeds, Marching on together.  We’ve had our ups and downs, but we’re going to stay with them forever – at least until the world stops going round.  Let’s remember that.

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70 responses to “Time For True Leeds United Fans to Get Positive and Support the Club – by Rob Atkinson

  1. arifrahimm

    Reblogged this on Blog Hours.

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  2. Colin Menzies

    Never a more true word spoken, we are Leeds United, Marching On Together….

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  3. David Smith

    Good article Rob – the voice of reason. Yesterday was embarrassing, but as you say, any success going forward with be the sweeter for it. Let’s keep the faith.

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  4. lets hope we make a statement of intent in the january transfer window saturday was a dark day what worries me was mcdermott pressurised into picking a strong starting line up by the powers that be if so are we still reliant on the money we needed to generate a cup run and maybe these guys havent the money we think they have

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    • That is a possible worry. There were rumours that Leeds were asking for at least one target not to be cup-tied, which might seem to suggest they were expecting a longer cup run. Whether they were actually relying on this is another question.

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      • I doubt we were relying on it for running costs, but I do think it will affect our ability to buy in January. Rochdale have Macclesfield or Sheffield Weds at home; seeing that draw, we might have counted on reaching the 5th Round. I hope McDermott gets bawled out – this is his fault.

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  5. Newent white

    I’ve changed my mind after actually reading some of those articles – I can see the Tories are evil now and so I’ll definitely be voting Labour. MOT to the election and get these bastards out!!

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  6. Martin Adams

    It is great to see some common sense being delivered, I am the first to admit that I was rather prickly in temperament on Sunday.

    My frustration mainly at the lack of effort and overall cohesion of a team that Neil Warnock had the gall to come out and call (aside from copious amounts of icing) a promotion capable side.

    Truth of the matter is that most of these lads have been playing together for nearly 2 seasons now yet they all seem to suffer from the inability to work for one another or string together any number of passes that don’t result in a ball pumped from the back line into either touch of an ineffective knockdown from Smith.

    You only need to look at the games that we have won convincingly this year to know that our midfield is a crucial cog, we have two good young centres in Murphy and Mowatt (not to mention a fully fit Sam Byram) who given the chance can make a cutting ball into a goal scoring position, this is only if the ball can stay on the deck though.

    Even in my gloom on Sunday I did not once think that sacking Brian McDermott would have been the right choice, yes the result and for that matter the whole Christmas period has been bleak but overall I feel the team is moving in the right direction.

    We are still a famous club with extraordinary support but we are no longer a glamour club that players would walk over broken glass just to join, 10 years in the footballing wilderness has seen to that.

    We as Leeds UNITED fans must be exactly that, Rochdale is done forget about it, support the Manager, the current players and whatever signings that Brian feel will improve our squad (I just hope that they can make it through the doors and actually touch a ball for Leeds before they get ripped apart by Leeds “doom and gloom” Fans).

    As always Rob I have enjoyed reading your blog.

    MOT Down Under

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    • Thanks Martin. Great to see some calm and some sanity out there and plenty of common sense! I agree about the poorness of the passing – this is something that has to improve and I’m sure it will. Meanwhile – MOT, right? Keep the faith and thanks again.

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  7. Very wise words very well said, Rob. A really excellent piece of work.

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  8. hi Rob – as always enjoyed your article. The Rochdale match was on live in OZ at the wonderful time of 3am Sunday morning. I did not watch it live but chose to record and watch at a later time. My phone was off to keep the score quiet. After 10 minutes of watching the worst football drivel I have witnessed for many a day I could not help myself and found the score on my phone. My worst thoughts were confirmed so I deleted the recording. With Leeds not in the premier league we poor exiled supporters would normally happily get out of bed at the most ridiculous of times to watch live Super Leeds. Alas, older in age and lacking confidence in the ability of the team, 3am is not a time I am willing to rise to watch the current team ply its trade. Since the match I have followed closely the reaction of the fans, especially those attending the game. I think we can all clearly see that ten years of frustration is at boiling point!
    Firstly, to all those questioning the manager, I ask you this; would any other current football manager take himself and his players to “greet” the fans after such a diabolical performance? I very much doubt any other manager would have the gumption to do so. No doubt BMD knew exactly what the reception would be and I for one applaud him for exposing his players and himself to what predictably followed.
    Secondly, I think it is reasonable for all supporters to wonder why BMD played the team he did? I like to think that it was because he had publicly announced he was looking to bring in up to four new players and he wanted to see if his ‘professionals’ would demonstrate their ‘professionalism’ by making a statement that they wanted desperately to keep playing in the first team. Alas, and worryingly, that was not the case.
    What happens to Leeds United now is indeed the major question for all of us frustrated thousands around the world. I would love to have your positivity Rob but there is a great deal of doubt building up inside of me. I have to say that doubt does not include the manager – BMD has shown enough to me to indicate that with the right support he is the man to lead this club back to where we all think it should be. It is not his fault that the only Arab based consortium to get involved with a UK football team does not have oodles of cash. They are what they are, a go-between to set up a consortium of potential benefactors. Should the new consortium get the go-ahead, as it seems will be the case, I do not envisage millions of pounds been made available for BMD to do a “Mancini”. Just look at the players he appears to be considering to sign and I think it is fair to say that Leeds will not be fielding any expensive superstars when we visit the Wendy’s later this week. The best I think we can hope for is that BMD has identified some players for the future that will enable him to play a system that he prefers rather than one he invented to cover the vast holes in the quality of players he inherited. Whether even four players will be enough, following the capitulation of the majority that played at Rochdale, remains my biggest concern.
    MOT

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  9. No, I don’t agree. Sorry. I didn’t boo us, because I think that only half the team were at fault. But this is really extremely serious. Look at the people involved: Kenny – half-fit and surely blameless. Zaliukas – made some mistakes, but surrounded by ineptitude as he was, he was probably wondering if he’d joined the right club. I don’t think Pugh & Smith can really be faulted either; it must be hard to be the only midfielder who’s trying and the only striker. McCormack – I don’t think we can really blame the half-fit left winger who can’t play in that position.

    I no longer believe we’re on the verge of anything. We’re 8th (where I said we’d be) and we’re out of both cups. Isn’t that actually worse than a year ago? You’ll say we have better players – but do we? You fear the manager was told to put out a strong team because of cup money. Good job too, if he was – but this? A strong team? This? Disgraceful – as a Leeds fan, I feel disgraced. It’s shaming. McDermott’s excuse for the Barnsley performance was that anyone can have an off day. True, but we’ve had a series of them. He claims the fixture pile-up was tiring. But that only works for the last couple of games, and why not use the squad? This was Rochdale. Varney should have been in for McCormack, Kenny should also have been rested for the sake of his fitness. They could have been on the bench. Brown and Tonge are fresh and good at the cup – ask Everton and Tottenham.

    What’s really bad, though, is this. Who else was playing? Peltier. I used to think he was a pretty good Championship RB/CB, only not right for Leeds – poor at going forward, but OK at the defending. I was wrong, he’s below average and lazy, or just lacking in the ability to read games, pass, tackle or run. I suppose we’re stuck with the shiftless tosser on account of Byram’s lack of fitness. But if Byram is unfit (rather than uninterested), whose fault is that? Does he need an operation (if so, our manager has lied to us) or has he not had a pre-season yet? If he’s fit to train send him off to a fitness camp without a football for 2 weeks. If he does need an operation he should have one now regardless of how much he misses. Otherwise he’ll be out for part of next year and get no pre-season then. I can see that coming. Wootton. Ok, let’s stretch the point here. Let’s hold on to the fact that this is only his 20th (if that) 1st team game ever, and that he was playing alongside rubbish. He deserves another chance. But Pearce should NEVER BE ALLOWED TO WEAR A LEEDS SHIRT AGAIN. At ANY level. No one will pay a fee for him, so for this, his 10,000th performance of this kind, he should be sacked. Imagine if you went to work and, over the course of a year, you mostly did nothing except mess up. He’s had a few good games this year but never displays much ability. He’s a lower division stopper, a clogger from the depths who compounds this by not bothering to even try. Footballers have it soft – he doesn’t deserve to be paid. Not with my money.

    Midfield. Oh, did we have one? We had Pugh looking bewildered over on the left, but was anyone else there? Oh dear, the memory’s coming back like a recurring nightmare. Murphy. Yes, of course he has talent, could play in the Premiership when he’s developed, is new to this level – hang on, this is Rochdale. If this was conventional employment he’d get a verbal warning. Austin. Played a captain’s game. Never mind saying the manager would lose the dressing room by changing captains mid-season. He’s lost it already and working hard at losing the fans. The players need to be called together and told that things aren’t working and must change, that this is all part of the process, that Austin could still have a future here and that Zaliukas should take over and that we now switch to 4-3-1-2 (with the one being a new winger who roams down both sides), or 4-42 if we get 2 in.

    Which just leaves the wonderful manager who will do no such thing, the door-fearing visionary whose staff are lower division men and who wants to build Leeds United up like Reading. Let’s all swallow the bitter pill now and admit it – he just can’t see when he’s wrong. He picked the wrong team, fine, that happens. We’ve all seen his ability with the subs bench. Now we have to face it. Why didn’t he change things at half time, when we were a goal down against Rochdale? He says that we need players, reminding me of O’Weary whining about having no-one to bring on and needing a new striker when he had Keane sitting on the bench. Well what about bringing on Brown and Tonge? Is there a good reason why Dawson hasn’t made the bench yet this season? Why wasn’t Brown brought on at half-time and given the armband? Why bring on a striker rather than 2 players who could have taken hold of that midfield, got the ball to Byram, Pugh, Smith and McCormack and maybe, just maybe, got us a draw. Why didn’t Lees get on too? Oh no, of course not, the man we need is Hunt, the man our golden age manager has admitted to signing WHILE CARRYING AN INJURY. Allegedly Hunt is now fit, though he didn’t seem to be in the mood for a game of football on Saturday. Stage one of the disciplinary process again, please.

    I just hope that McDermott pulls his socks up, because I think that Square One is just around the next bend and will come racing into sight very soon now. Everyone has played us once this year already and knows how to take us apart.

    Of course we should get behind the team. But there’s no point in pretending thimgs aren’t as they are. We can expect a winger to join us, but I doubt we’ll get much more this window.

    Sorry to be so negative, but I prefer cold reality.

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    • John , that’s well written and an argument very well put , I agree on most points especially making zaliukas capt , what I can’t help wondering is why we were 5th just before xmas with such a poor team , ok barnsley was poor but got a draw , blackpool was unlucky in my opinion and we looked the better side , so all this has now come about since a ( antisipated) loss at notts forest , yes we need new players and bmac as said he’s chasing 4 , maybe I’m just playing devils advocate here but barnsley , blackburn and most definatley rochdale are the games were all pissed off about ??! do you think since we were 5th and bmac has said he wants 4 new players that the current bunch have gone into some kind of panic mode thinking , or rather knowing thier days are numbered ??

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      • That last sentence is a hell of a good question!

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      • I think we’ve slipped because we’ve been found out. We don’t have an over-talented squad, the manager patched us up and tried 5-3-2, and it worked for a few games. We were bound to have another bad spell. What’s changed for me is that some of our players just don’t care, and our manager is unwilling to use his subs and squad properly. I feel ill whenever I think about the Rochdale game.

        I have only one hope left – McDermott has a long, hard rethink about everything, gets in a right-back, centre-back (anyone with work rate will do for either position), a decent winger and reverts to a felxible 4-4-2/4-3-3. Otherwise I fear the second half of this season will be like the second half of last season, only without the cup games.

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    • Irrational John B … take a pill and have a lie down, listen to the good advice Rob is giving you … LUFC lost a football match to alleged inferior opposition and the World is in total meltdown?

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      • I do believe that last season, Liverpool lost and went out to Oldham, the damage being done by a certain Matt Smith. Oldham were a team two leagues below Liverpool, so the cases are parallel. Liverpool seem to be doing OK now, don’t they?

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      • The display we put in was terrible, as it has been for the last few weeks. I don’t care about us having a bad day and being giant-killed.

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  10. lordatlufc

    Well said Rob couldn’t agree more, really think we are close to recreating a team we can all be proud of again. Just need to give our young talented players some time and they we come through for us. That and 3 quality additions and all will look rosy. MOT

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    • Hear, hear – MOT

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    • I think if we rely on the kids too much it will be an Eddie Gray situation; in 2-3 years time we’ll be floating around 8th place will talented kids, lacking a bit in one or two positions and the manager will be sacked.

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    • Sorry, you did say kids with 3 additions. Well, I guess Alibyi is one of the kids and goes in on the wing, and we need one more experienced pro in central midfield, of similar quality to McCormack and Zaliukas. I think it would take too long. We need more.

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  11. The usual cobblers from the cups half fill brigade.
    You will never get change and improvement without strong protest.
    History shows us this.
    Bates left because the fans stayed away in droves, not because he realised we did not like him.
    Our team has been rubbish for over 10 years – not 90 minutes.
    We have been continually shafted by lies, and more lies, and still turned up to support the team.
    The protest at Rochdale was LONG overdue, and it is up to the manager & board to sort it out.
    WE do NOT own the club.
    We are customers.
    Many spending over £100 to get to away gamesIs it value for money???
    Of course not!!!
    Do we have to waste our lives worrying about the team??
    We do not!
    The TEAM LEADS, and we FOLLOW!
    When the team steps out against Sheffield Wednesday, they will have our 100% support from the kick off.
    If the play badly (again) they will be hooded at the end.
    You can’t very well give them a round of applause.
    That would be silly, and dishonest!
    Onward and upward!!

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    • They’ll be hooded? What are you going to do, have them marched off behind the stand and shot?

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      • Hey Rob!
        You are starting to get silly!
        If we could execute the surplus players, Bates would have already done it, to save paying them off!!
        What I would have done, as manager, is left the players behind, and departed on the coach with just my staff.
        The players could have asked the fans for a lift home!
        What a journey that would be.
        Our league is full of very average teams but they all play better football than us.
        Anyone can get knocked out of the cup, and I have no trouble with that.
        We were totally outplayed (as we are in most games, even if we scrape a win) and humiliated by Rochdale.
        We could have lost 5 -0.
        When did we last dominate a game?
        List the games where we looked like promotion candidates?

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  12. john palmer

    I seem to remember Dicanio going over to his fans to get slaughted just before he was sacked

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  13. Before the game having a pint in the Rochdale equivalent of “Billy’s Bar”, must admit to fearing the worst. Agree with the points you have made. Can someone tell me whats happened to Stephen Warnock?? Reportedly the highest wage earner

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    • Pugh (like Warnock, a high wage-earner signed by a previous manager) is keeping him out. The squad’s top-heavy with left-sided defensive players and in this formation we can only play one. McDermott just hasn’t wanted one for the bench just lately.

      At least, so I guess. I think I’m right in saying that Green and Norris are injured and Warnock is fit. I think Thompson is the missing man at the moment.

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  14. whiterhino

    I share you beliefs and optimism, but almost against my better judgement I’m drawn back to a certain FA cup tie in Wales, when that seemed to be the catalyst for one of the most complete capitulations in football…..
    I’d like to think circumstances are afoot (now) that actually some good comes of recent misfortune.
    Any way I take solace from the fact that our “friends” across the hill (well down in Devon and Hertfordshire), will win exactly the same amount of trophies as us this season!

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  15. I think its all these cup games every week against tiny clubs pulling their finger out. Or maybe that Leeds are just an average championship club living on past glories who just don’t have the gravitas anymore. Although you seem to think your the only show in town. I’d concentrate on your own performance rather than blaming other sides for raising their game in their ‘once in a lifetime’ game against a team who were great in 1972. Rob, nobody cares about your ‘awesome’ away support. it seems all you hang on to. Lets be honest if the M5 and M6 close all your local fans from Oxfordshire will be knackered. Your just Man Utd wannabes. And no, I don’t follow them. And that ‘its good to be king’ line. Lame mate, lame

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    • It’s amazing how many lengthy, carefully-crafted responses I get from the likes of you Dan, telling me in painstaking detail how much you just don’t care. Amusingly ironic.

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  16. JOHN INGHAM

    WELL DONE MR.ATKINSON,ANOTHER QUALITY COMMENT.VERY ENJOYABLE.

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  17. good inspiring article!

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  18. I know, I learnt it from you moaning about fan behaviour and MUFC fans not living near Manchester. Its good to be king.

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  19. During the dark years of footballs answer to Pol Pot there were 2 schools of thought amongst Leeds supporters. A) Stay away for change. B) Support the team no matter what. Unfortunately clubs prey on the blind loyalty of supporters just as bates did with us. Take Newcastle United who have the same blind loyalty as us. If ever a clubs supporters have repeatedly been lied to,ripped off and taken for granted it’s both them and us. Look at the way shepherd and hall mocked the Toon Army in that tabloid sting. They knew, just as bates knew and just as Haigh knows also, that there will always be a hardcore of support turning up no matter what rubbish is served up on the pitch. Personally i’ve got the utmost respect and admiration for the lads and lasses who go home and away to every game but i’m also fed up with suits taking my money and giving nothing in return. My match day highlights over the past 10 years have mainly been the actual 220 train journeys. Once again come mid season when our hopes of a play-off place disappear the season is re-titled a “transitional period” and the board and management appease the fans by telling them how incredible,loyal,loud and pretty they all are. “Lets have 30,000 for the next home game” was the latest rallying call and a fat lot of good that was in getting a decent performance out of the team. I like BM but i refuse to be taken in just because he says the right things. Lets not forget warnock continually praised the fans etc too. This transfer window is going to be make or break for our club now as it’s just as important who leaves than who goes. If Haigh and BM want our blind faith then i’m afraid words aren’t enough. Earn it.

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  20. Many thanks Rob for cheering me up! MOT

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    • No worries, Gerald. I hope there’s cause to be cheerful in the times ahead. But meanwhile, if you want to see equally eloquent expressions of opposite points of view, may I commend you to the recent responses from LeedsMick and SniffersShorts. They disagree with each other I think, but they have passion and love for the club in common. Quality stuff, as I’ve come to expect from certain of this blog’s readers.

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  21. sniffersshorts

    why are so many so fecking negative, as stated the cup has become a banana skin, it goes all way back to Colchester… when we draw a big team a prem team we lift our game. Rochdale, Histon et all do this they are playing a team full of history they want the scalp of LUFC …. we all dwell on the past, we have had our moments and winning is not a god right given… lets turn up for a start on pitch and stands …. minor agreements on revolving tired legs, we have a squad and certain individuals could have been slotted in. and yes agreed with another, a few heads will be on the block ….. when and if new blood comes in. however if an individual wants to stay, wants to impress, wants to wear the colours in front of the fans and the boss. what would you do play your socks off. the sooner some of Warnocks wanna bees are gone the better, but until THEN you cant call for Brians head, hes got what hes got until the bread is split and we build further. Brian has always stated this is a team in the making ….. the play offs are dream land this term…. get back into a winning mentality and new blood then maybe …. until then support your team to the hilt WE ARE LEEDS MOT

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  22. 38yearshomeandawayandhad enoughofbeingshite

    Utter crap. Club is a shambles. Manager is clueless and out of his depth. Anybody who thinks Peltier, Pugh, Smith, Wooton, Pearce, Austin, Murphy, Hunt, Lees, Varney, Green, Norris, Brown, White, Tonge, Diouf, Norris, Poleon, Thompson etc are good enough is deluded. All Mc Dermott’s signing bar Zaliukas have been shocking. Keep him, Mc Cormack ( when he can be arsed ), Mowatt and Byram and get rid of the rest. And we’ll be treated to more shite in this window. £1m for Murphy. Cairney took the piss out of the Leeds midfield on New Years day and is available for £500K. Wooton a £1m player my arse. Trouble is after Bates and Warnock, anything will do.

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    • Any thoughts on this fine, positive outlook? 🙂

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      • Yeah,let’s just see what happens this month. The Rochdale game should be the watershed,it wasn’t the result it was the performance coming after a string of mediocre performances. Ideally i’d like to have that clever lad at Forest who plays down the left, Abdoun.Ravel Morrison would be a good un too as he’ll be away in this window if he’s got any sense. It’s obvious that at least 5 should go though. Diouf ought to have his contract cancelled,the few occasions he’s played he’s looked like a hod carrier having a kickabout on a spanish summer holiday. Brown has to go without doubt,like a German on the piste he’s a total liability. Norris,varney,hunt,pearce and warnock may aswell move on for the good they do. It would be best for all parties if a deal was negotiated with the PFA to cancel all their contracts as i’m sure they all want first team football. That would free up a few million for wages.

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      • Well, 38years’ list is too long, is my thought. It’s just a few of them, and the manager isn’t showing the signs of the necessary rethink. And McCormack is always arsed, you can’t blame him.

        One more thought – did we really kick Crainey out for being too short???

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    • You are right about the majority of players named but they are that bad no one wants them, that’s why we are going nowhere as usual. If the whole squad was put up for sale (again) you would only get bids for the 4 you said we should keep

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  23. Against Barnsley I thought we played well, and their keeper was MOTM, against Blackpool we were the better team, and it took a deflection and a criminal no pen for us to not come away with 3 points. Against Forest although the home team were the better side, it took a wonder goal to win the game, after a lapse in concentration after just equalising . Blackburn came too soon for our group of players, Mowatt hitting the bar could have been 2-2 rather than 1-2. Then on to Rochdale, I knew we would lose as it was their cup final already, Just dissapointed with every player apart from Murphy,Smith,Kenny, Ross. Id like to see Dawson played, Pearce dropped forever, along with Peltier and Austin, Zaliukas handed the Capns armband, and additions of Oliver Norwood, Cameron Stewart,Johny Jackson, and a decent replacement for Pearce. Think with decent additions, we will go up, theres not a lot that needs fixing, just a few tweeks here and there. In Brian I trust. M.O.T

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  24. Well I think this is a first for me on this even though I’ve read them for quite a while now.
    I thought it was a very good read and well thought and constructively written tbh!
    Thanks rob

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  25. Thank you for that Rob you have taken away the doom and gloom and reinstated some positivity in my thinking once more.

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    • If it had that effect for just one person it was worth writing – and I think with you Jan it might even be two 🙂

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      • Being ‘positive’ serves no purpose.
        Be honest instead.
        Even if it hurts it is OK!
        Eddie Gray, summed us up quite nicely.
        Our performances have been poor for some time, and our run of victories – often against the run of play – covered over the cracks!

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  26. sniffersshorts

    just one other thing, lets stop the blame game …. its a team game individuals sometimes are off their game….. the next time Pelts, The beast or Pearce scores, rare as rockin horse shit prehaps …… he will be vaulted a hero , even by the knockers … will those who blame ever say fair play he is a good lad after all…. they aint the best but ive seen but give blood and guts especially Pearce he will stick his head in a bees nest for us if it was hanging from the cross bar …. my only complaint is conceding just before half time and at the last knockings …. Brian needs to get the mentality of fight to the last second…. the last season in the first div we never gave quarter and fought for the cause….. thanks for your comments Rob and others, yes the passion will never leave me until I draw my last breath, always a white until death us do part …… things can only get better.

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  27. Counte Of Monte Fisto

    Mr Orange, you ask why this same squad was 5th not so long ago, the answer to that is simple. Ross McCormack was on fire & creating / scoring goals for fun. But you can’t rely on just 1 player & Ross is not creating / scoring for fun right now. That puts us where we are a bottom 3 side with Ross McCormack. The formation though is the problem when did we last dominate a team in midfield, not this season to my mind. Rob mostly I agree wiuth your words & I think we all need to move on quickly

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    • Counte , yes we have relied on Ross mac a lot this season , but smith has still chipped in with, erm 7 I think ?!! But I don’t think a striker losing a bit of form can be the reason why the team has suddenly become so disjointed as it was against rochdale

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  28. I don’t mind admitting I was one of the fans booing and giving the v sign to the team after the game at Rochdale. They deserved it . I go every week home and away and consider myself as loyal as they come but I also work everyday for an average wage for which alot is spent on lufc and has we sang on Saturday ” we work all week for this” . I will not apologise for the response the players/management received on Saturday . They needed that as a reality check . They are doing a job most lads would give their right arm to do given the ability. I can cope with watching leeds lose , even thrashed when knowing we have been beaten by a better team as long as the boys have put in a shift. Saturday was an appalling showing , a lack of ability which even a Sunday league team would have been ashamed of. Taking nothing from dale , they wanted it but when you see seasoned pro’s unable to pass a simple ball and unclear of where their team mates are or of any positional sense it is embarrassing and the most annoying thing is we have played teams like Burnley and ipswich off the park this season albeit with little luck against Burnley. God knows what Billy would have had to say , god bless him.
    However Rob you are right now is the time for every one of us to get right behind the team . They know they let everyone including themselves down and sure we let them know what we felt and so we should have but like a Father telling off his kids , once it’s done and the dust has settled we have to now give them all the support we can cos we’re not like most other club’s fans we know next week we’ll be there again the sold out signs will be back up for our unbelievable away support and we have to show the team that we are right behind them win , lose or draw. just give us 100% . This club has had more downs than most but if we all stick together we will I am sure be stronger. Keep the faith lads and lasses cos we are leeds.See you all Saturday. M.O.T….. Andy L

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  29. The Leeds fans reaction at Rochdale was long overdue after such a bad run of poor results, but those magnificent fans will dust themselves down and be back in their thousands for the next game at Sheff Wed, because they all love Leeds.
    The players must dust themselves down, but some of them are clearly out of their depth and need replacing with 4 or 5 new signings, as soon as possible, just to stop the rot.
    4 or 5 new signings will freshen up this extremely stale Leeds team and could get Leeds into the Play-Offs, which are still in reach.
    I am looking at the bigger picture though and want new players signed to build a strong, well balanced squad for a proper automatic promotion push next season, if a Play-Offs success is not achieved this season.

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  30. Agree with most of the comments on here and the blog is excellent. I feel much better for that Rob. You should be a motivational guru and take a job at ER. I also have some empathy with John B’s argument though. Very persuasive! In a nutshell, we need four or five players in to compliment the four or five good and consistent players that we already have. RM is not able to carry the team every time. Some of the others could be half decent squad players if they work hard and get BM’s trust.

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  31. Good stuff as usual Rob and some great comments from some. Interesting that King Billy DIDN’T play at Colchester, would we have done better if he had? My opinion as an ex captain is that the captain sets the pace, he shouts and balls, he cajoles, he kicks ass when needed and he leads by example. When things are wrong on the pitch the captain doesn’t need the manager to alter things except by substitution and even then he might have a say. The captain IS the manager’s trusted lieutenant on the pitch.. Unfortunately Austin doesn’t do any of those Captainly things and doesn’t deserve BMcD’s trust, simply not good enough and definitely not captain material.
    I think a change is needed quick.
    MOT to Sheffield and a change of fortune.

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    • Agree with all your comments re: captaincy. As for Colchester, we pulled back to 3-2 from 3-0 down with 20 still to go – can’t believe a massive influence like Billy wouldn’t have hauled us that extra mile.

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    • I’ve calmed down a lot now, and I think we have to say that, putting the best possible light on things, some players are incapable of following the manager’s instructions. Modern football is fast and complicated, that’s why you sometimes see a ball knocked into empty space – the passing player has played the ball quickly to someone who is supposed to run onto it but has forgotten and is miles away.

      I think it’s clear that Pearce, Peltier and Austin are incapable and, in this game, Murphy and Wootton. I must say I’m surprised at Wootton as he came from scum and should have a better grounding Byram and Mowatt don’t do that stuff, so we have to train Murphy and Wootton up.

      And those 5 were enough to doom the rest of the team – what could they do?

      But you also have to say that it’s clear now that we have a manager who just can’t change things during a game. We got rid of Hall, so let’s get rid of Peltier, Pearce, Austin and Warnock (I agree with Eddie Gray that White is our best left back) at once. I’d keep the rest of the usual suspects until the summer, as we can’t sign 10 at once.

      Progress right now would involve McDermott changing his ways with subs and getting a Championship RB and a CB or two in for the squad (remember wages are low now, and there are a lot of unemployed players out there), and picking a team of (when they’re all fit): Kenny; Byram, Lees, Zaliukas (capt.), White; [new winger], Green, Mowatt, Pugh; Smith, McCormack. Of course that assumes we get only one signing in, and Green is very average, but has at least shown he play in front of the back four. Hopefully we get 2 or 3 good ones in and 2 or 3 more in the summer.

      Of course it’s all a moot point right now as Green and White are injured, Byram is probably unfit too and McDermott will just stick Hunt in the team next week. All I can do is hope.

      Just to say again, this isn’t to do with one cup game. It’s to do with one of the worst Leeds performances I’ve ever seen following a run of bad games. Tired? Eddie Gray pointed out that Rochdale have a smaller squad and have played as many as quickly. Leeds are consistently poor at the moment and if we don’t get at least one in I think we’ll finish mid table even if the above team is picked.

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  32. Re Colchester, sometimes things just don’t go for you. I wasn’t there, but I did see us lose 1-0 to Sunderland and I saw non-league Wimbledon’s goalkeeper save a Lorimer penalty. I remember us being all over both teams, and Bremner played in both games. The Rochdale game wasn’t like those…

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  33. Dave Fallon

    Great blog Rob and I’ve enjoyed the numerous opinions from everyone else. However the point must be made that the one aspect of the Rochdale game, as well as a few other matches recently, is that there is definitely a lack of leadership in the group. I like Austin as a player, and there are a few more in the team with spine, but no one is leading by example. The January transfer window should see Brian target a leader, as well as a winger, striker and others. We desperately need someone with pride, attitudesomeone like a Vinny Jones is needed. Nothin’ wrong with a bit of mongrel in em’.

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