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Sat Nov 30th. United lose at Blackburn.  United:  Kenny, Lees, Zaliukas, Pearce, Peltier (Byram 58) Pugh, Austin, Mowatt, Murphy (Poleon 81), Varney (Smith 58), McCormack. Subs. Cairns, Warnock, Brown, Tonge. Referee:  C Pawson Booked:  Varney, Mowatt, Zaliukas (Leeds). Att:  20,267  (Report from LUFC) United manager Brian McDermott made one change to his starting 11 with Luke Varney coming in for the injured Dexter Blackstock. Saturday’s match at Ewood Park is the striker’s first involvement since the away defeat to Millwall in late September. The bench also saw one change with the fit again Stephen Warnock returning to the matchday squad. There were also two milestones in the United line-up with Ross McCormack making his 100th start for the club and skipper Rudy Austin making his 50th from the first whistle. Paddy Kenny was tested early on when David Dunn struck from just outside the box, but the keeper was ready for his 5th minute effort and pushed it round his post for a Blackburn corner. The following 10 minutes brought a good spell of possession for United with plenty of passing in midfield without really troubling Jake Kean in the home goal. The momentum of the game swtiched midway through the half and the home side began having the better of the play. Like United earlier in the game, the home side struggled to break down the defence and mount a real goalscoring opportunity. Following the 30-minute mark United had a golden chance to take the lead in a game of very little goalmouth action. A long ball forward by Tom Lees was knocked down into the path of Ross McCormack, who played in Danny Pugh. But Blackburn keeper Kean did well to deny the United man with his legs. With the opening half drawing to a close Kenny was forced into making a great save from Chris Taylor. Todd Kane broke down the right hand side and crossed for Taylor who controlled and shot in one movement and the United keeper made a fantastic save to keep the game goalless. Kenny’s save wasn’t to be the last action of the first half though. United conceded a corner deep into injury time, which was met by Tommy Spurr who finished well to give the home side the advantage going into the interval. The home side started the second period as the better side by continuing the pressure that saw them take the lead late on in the opening 45 minutes. Alex Mowatt made a vital interception 10 minutes into the half to prevent Dunn who had broken forward from midfield and was baring down on United’s goal. Moments later Brian McDermott made a double substitution by introducing Sam Byram and Matt Smith. Just after the hour past United once again had Kenny to thank after he made another great save. This time it was Josh King ZalukasvBburnwho struck from the edge of the box but Kenny turned the ball over his crossbar with a superb save. United began to pile on the pressure with 20 minutes remaining. Smith looked to be pulled to the ground as he was stretching to meet a Pugh cross but Craig Pawson pointed for a goal kick. Rudy Austin also saw a powerful shot go just wide. Dominic Poleon was added to United’s attacking line in place of Luke Murphy as the away side went in search of an equaliser. Chances kept coming United’s way, and McCormack saw a shot from distance go wide with just minutes remaining. As the game went into four added minutes the home side continued to withstand United’s pressure and Spurr’s first half injury time goal proved to be enough. It may have been different if Pugh hadn’t missed a sitter five minutes before Rovers scored. It was a disappointing display in front of nearly 7,000 travelling fans. But as we know from past experience, fans don’t win football games, footballers do. We lacked that bit of quality and Rovers were worth their win. The background of further investment is promising, and it is therefore all the more important that we cling on to the play off positions and add vital quality in January. We lost ground today when the likes of Burnley lost at Huddersfield and QPR were done at lowly Donacaster. It needs to be picked up again with a vital three points against an unpredictable Wigan later this week. Speaking on LUTV, McDermott said, “We didn`t deserve to lose. We could have gone in one ahead but instead went in one behind and it proved a crucial goal. “We didn`t create as many chances as we have been and I am disappointed by that. “I don`t think they deserved to win and I think a draw would have been a fair result. “We have won five of our last eight, three of our last four and we will be looking to bounce back in midweek.”

Sat Nov 30th. Club Statement. GFH Capital, majority owners of Leeds United FC, have granted a period of exclusivity to the investors in readiness for the January transfer window. The two parties have signed a share acquisition agreement for the purchase of shares in the club with GFH retaining a significant stake. The consortium includes a number of high profile businessmen, and does not include any previous owners or players of the club. It is anticipated that the investment will be in place for the January transfer window and will see existing Chairman Salah Nooruddin and Managing Director David Haigh remain at the club for the long term. Since formally completing its purchase of Leeds United in December 2012 GFH Capital has always stated it was its plan to ensure the long term and sustainable regeneration of the club through partnering with strategic and like-minded investors who share its vision. The announcement is the culmination of many months of negotiations by a team led by David Haigh. Looks like the sand is getting turned into money at last.

Sun Nov 24th. Leeds United forward Ryan Hall has left the club by mutual consentHall recently spent a month on loan with Yorkshire rivals Sheffield United and played five times during his spell at Bramall Lane. But he was suspended on his return to Leeds as the club investigated a breach of discipline, believed to be related to the club’s social media code of conduct. Hall came through the ranks at Crystal Palace but failed to secure a regular place in the side before making his name at Southend, where he scored 23 goals in 105 matches. He impressed during a loan spell at Leeds before making the switch permanent in January but he has now left Elland Road. No Loss. Another flop signing by Warnock.  

ROSS McCORMACK SCORES LEEDS FIRST GOAL

Sat Nov 23rd Leeds 2-1 M’Bro. United defeated Boro in front of 20 travelling Louth branch members and launched themselves into play off mode at the same time.Report from Official website. United:  Kenny, Lees, Zaliukas, Pearce, Pugh (Byram 81), Peltier, Mowatt, Murphy (Brown 87), Austin, McCormack, Blackstock (Smith 81). Subs. Cairns, Tonge, Varney, Poleon. Boro: Att:  30,367 With the November international break out of the way United were back at Elland Road to face Middlesbrough. United manager Brian McDermott made two changes to his team that beat Charlton two weeks ago with Alex Mowatt and Marius Zaliukas coming in from the start in place of Michael Brown and the injured Scott Wootton. For his first game as Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka named two ex-United players in Frazer Richardson and Boro captain Jonathan Woodgate. The atmosphere in Elland Road was electric from the first whistle with both teams having half-chances in the opening five minutes. United were the first to create an attack when Danny Pugh was found out wide by Mowatt but unfortunately Ross McCormack was seen to be offside. The away side had a chance to strike at goal from a free-kick just 20-yards out but Grant Leadbitter hit his effort into the United wall. Another good chance fell United’s way just before the 10 minute mark when Jason Pearce latched onto a loose ball in the away area but his headed effort went wide of the mark. The noise levels went up another notch on 11 minutes when the home crowd paid tribute to former United midfielder Gary Speed. The United defence had to be on their game as the vistiors enjoyed a good spell of possession. The attacking threat of the away side was cut out several times with last ditch headers and blocks keeping Boro at bay. Midway through the half Rudy Austin tested Jason Steele’s hands with a strike from distance but the away keeper got his body behind the ball well and saved his advances. Another good chance came the way of United just miinutes later when McCormack made space for himself to cross for his strike partner, but Dexter Blackstock put his shot just wide of the left hand post. Following the 30 minute mark a great strike from Pugh almost gave United the lead. A great point-blank save from Steele turned the ball round for a corner. The resulting corner brought the first goal of the game and it was the league’s inform striker McCormack with the games opener. The floated corner made its way to the back post and it was played back into the mix by Tom Lees and there was McCormack at the near post to head home from just six-yards out. The away sides task became a harder one in the 43rd minute when they were reduced to 10 men. The straight red came about when Blackstock latched onto a poor backpass and got to the ball before Steele could. The goalkeeper clattered the striker and was given his marching orders by Philip Gibbs as he was the last man and prevented a goalscoring opportunity. Marvin Emnes was the man sacrificed as the away side brought on their replacement keeper Jayson Leutwiler. United started the second half well but the contest was levelled with the half just seven minutes old. Albert Adomah broke down the left hand side and crossed for the onrushing Mustapha Carayol to finish beautifully with a first time strike. United responded well to the away side drawing level with a blocked shot from Austin and only a great save by the substitute keeper kept out a strike from Mowatt. United were not to be denied a third time, though, when Pearce rose well at the back post to smash a header home to restore the advantage on 57 minutes. Pearce’s goal seemed to settle United as they took control of the ball. With 20 minutes of the game left United were close to doubling their advantage twice in the space of two minutes. First Pugh crossed superbly for Mowatt who was inches away from his first senior goal and then Austin headed just wide when he out-jumped the away defence at the back post. In the 78th minute the away side had their first sight of goal since going behind for the second time, when George Friend cut inside but his shot flew over the United crossbar. With just less than 10 minutes remaining Brian McDermott made a double change by introducing Matt Smith and Sam Byram for Blackstock and Pugh. A further substition was made minutes later as Michael Brown was brought onto the field the add some muscle to proceedings. The 10 men of Boro were looking more of a threat as the game went into five minutes of injury time and Lukas Jutkiewicz fizzed a long range shot at Paddy Kenny but the United keeper held the ball well. The Jutkiewicz strike proved to be Boro’s final effort on goal as United secured a third straight league victory. It was far from a cultured and comfortable display but it’s three wins on the bounce and up to sixth now with the most prolific forward in the division on top of his game. There were assured performances from Zaliukas and Mowatt. Leeds ds have 7,000 tickets sold already for next weeks’s game at Blackburn who had just over 12,000 fans for their home match against Reading. Thurs 21st of November. Radebe explains interest. Leeds United’s board are yet to receive a second offer from the consortium bidding to buy the club, despite Lucas Radebe revealing last night that he is backing an attempt to secure shares in Leeds. United turned down a £7million bid for a majority stake from a UK-based group over the weekend and have attracted no further offers since dismissing the approach as “risible”. The consortium concerned have not declared their identities but individuals involved with the group are understood to include Mike Farnan, a former commercial and marketing employee with Sunderland and Manchester United, Frank Devoy – a business associate of Farnan’s – and Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Gary Verity. Former Hull City chairman Adam Pearson has also been heavily linked with the consortium, but he denied any involvement soon after news of their bid broke on Saturday. The seven-figure offer to Leeds, which was aimed at securing a stake well in excess of 50 per cent, was immediately rejected by United owner GFH Capital with the Dubai-based firm openly doubting the credibility of the proposal. The YEP understands that Verity was due to be a boardroom guest at Elland Road for Saturday’s Championship game against Middlesbrough but that invitation has now been withdrawn. United’s directors are believed to be unhappy about the intense coverage of the consortium’s approach. A statement released by club legend Radebe last night fuelled expectation of forthcoming investment at Elland Road, though the former Leeds defender appeared to rule out the possibility of involving himself in a hostile takeover by saying his group’s plan involved “working with GFH Capital”. United have themselves held talks with Radebe about the possibility of the 44-year-old purchasing equity in a club who were sold to GFH Capital by ex-chairman Ken Bates less than a year ago. Radebe, who captained Leeds and played for them between 1994 and 2004, maintains huge popularity among United’s fanbase and would be a highly popular addition to the board, an ambition he called his “dream scenario”. Radebe said: “I can confirm that I am part of a consortium which has submitted a preliminary indication of interest regarding the acquisition of a stake in Leeds United. “We hope to continue our recent discussions confidentially with the current shareholders and the board. We would like the opportunity to explain both the substance of our proposal and our strategy for working with GFH Capital to continue the re-building process at the club. “Leeds United has a special place in my heart. Ever since I retired I have been considering ways to get involved at the club – working at board level with an equity interest would be the pinnacle. It is my dream scenario.”

Thurs Nov 14th. Good to see Ross McCormack  get back into the Scotland squad even if it meant that Jordan Rhodes had to pull out for it to happen. Thorougly deserved for the Championship’s top scorer.

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Sat Nov 9th. Charlton Athletic  2-4 Leeds United . 01 Kenny, 02 Peltier, 16  Pugh, 05 Pearce, 22 Wootton (Zaliukas – 45′ ) 04 Lees, 06 Murphy, 08 Austin 09 Blackstock  (Smith – 76′ ) 44 McCormack ,  17 Brown  Unused Subs : 07 Green  18 Tonge 23 Thompson 26 Poleon 33 Cairns  Report from BBC Leeds. Ross McCormack scored  four goals as Leeds United won at Charlton Athletic. The striker struck from inside the area early in the first half to open the scoring, before Cameron Stewart equalised with a shot from distance. A McCormack penalty put Leeds ahead again, but a close-range Johnnie Jackson finish made it 2-2. But McCormack fired into the roof of the net to complete his hat-trick, before rounding off the scoring with a free-kick.  Heavy rain earlier in the day had caused the kick-off to be delayed until 15:30 GMT, with turnstiles not open to supporters until one hour before. Charlton had not conceded in more than seven hours going into the game and they showed some promise early on when Callum Harriott curled an effort wide. But the visitors took the lead when Dexter Blackstock played a ball into the path of McCormark and the striker calmly slotted beyond home keeper Ben Hamer. Charlton pressed for an equaliser and were level on the stroke of half-time when Jackson’s free-kick was curled into the area, and though it was headed away, the ball fell to Stewart, who struck a volley beyond Paddy Kenny. Leeds were back in front, though, three minutes after the break when Danny Pugh was fouled inside the area by Harriott and McCormack blasted the penalty into the roof of the net. The game swung from one end of the pitch to the other and Charlton were level again when Simon Church got the better of two defenders and crossed towards the near post, where Jackson finished. But no sooner had the Charlton fans finished celebrating that goal, Leeds regained the lead when McCormack volleyed home. He then grabbed his fourth by curling home a superb free-kick. Charlton manager Chris Powell: “It was a strange game because for 70  minutes we were well in there. “But McCormack showed his quality. Conditions play a part but you have to be very diligent when you are defending in your own box. “We showed some character to come back but Lgue19McCormack was the major difference in the end between two well-matched teams.” Leeds manager Brian McDermott: “We’ve been trying to find the best position for Ross because if you give him chances he will score. “I’m  delighted for him because when they pulled it back to 2-2 it could have gone either way. “Is he good enough for the Premier League? Absolutely. But we won’t worry about that yet – hopefully he can keep doing that for us.” The fans are a machine, to have support like that, there is no-one better. They were absolutely amazing. “I have a real pride of both the players and the supporters; it was amazing behind the goal today. “You try to create camaraderie between the players and the fans and it was there for all to see.”It was a fantastic game today and I enjoyed every second of it.” It’s a strange league that brings strange results week after week. Surely Burnley were a home banker against Bournmouth, and high flying Leicester only had to turn up against Notts Forest who were turned over a couple of weeks ago at Yeovil. In form Charlton, unbeaten in five matches looked good value against a Leeds side unsteady on the road, but Leeds hung in there despite being under pressure for large parts of the game, and always managed to get that goal to cling on to. McDermott sprung a few surprises with his line up, recalling Pugh and Brown, with the former making the penalty for McCormack to convert. Blackstock gives us much needed pace up front and I’m far happier seeing McCormack playing off a striker. He’s a 20 league goal player in the Championship if provided with the service. I know because I backed him at the start to be top scorer and a fool and his money are often parted. This is no fool. We’re far from the finished article but this was a tasty result going into the international break and we now lie just one point outside the play offs.

RODSS McCORMACK SCORES LEEDS SECOND GOAL

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Sat Nov 2nd. Leeds get 3rd home win on trot and go up to 8th. UNITED 2 (McCormack 48, 67), YEOVIL 0. United: Kenny, Peltier, Lees, Pearce, Wootton, Warnock (Zaliukas 41), Mowatt, Murphy, Austin, Smith (Blackstock 58), McCormack. Subs. Cairns, Brown, Tonge, Diouf, Varney.Yeovil: Hennesey, McAllister, Edwards, Webster, Dawson (Moore 68), Upson,  Hoskins (Foley 79), Duffy, Ralls, Davis (Madden 68), Grant. Subs. Dunn, Ayling, Hayter, Fontaine. Referee: R Clark Att: 25, 351 Report from LUFC website. United manager Brian McDermott made one change to his team that suffered defeat the previous weekend with the inclusion of Lee Peltier in place of Sam Byram. Last weekend’s goalscoring substitute Dexter Blackstock and new signing Marius Zaliukas were on the bench for the game at Elland Road. There was also a return to the matchday squad for El-Hadji Diouf. United started the game well and had a chance to take the lead within the opening three minutes. Smith used the ball well and played it into the path of Alex Mowatt whose shot from inside the box looked to be heading into the top right-hand corner, but the strike brought a fantastic save from Wayne Hennesey. There were also early warning signs for United in the first five minutes with Joel Grant making some good runs and Stephen Warnock made a great interception to prevent a shot on goal from the away side. Yeovil continued to look a threat on the break and Joe Ralls tried his luck from distance but his effort went wide of the mark. Following the strike from Ralls United set camp in the Yeovil half of the field and Rudy Austin saw two strikes on goal blocked and another go just wide. United continued their onslaught on the away goal and Smith had a great chance to put his side ahead just before the 20 minute mark. A strong run forward from Austin created a crossing opportunity and he played the ball across the six-yard box, but Smith mis-timed his strike and the ball continued on its path across the goal. Moments later Mowatt saw a curled effort just go past the left-hand post. The away side really came into the game and enjoyed a good spell of possession from the 30 minute mark. Jason Pearce rescued United on two separate occasions with last-ditched tackles to prevent Yeovil having sight of goal. Before the referee blew for half time United manager was forced into making a change. Warnock had picked up a knock and was unable to shake it off so their was a debut for Lithuanian international Marius Zaliukas who slotted in as one of the three centre halves, with Pearce moving to the left-wing back role. Pearce continued on the left side as the second half got underway and the defender found himself with a sight of goal in the 46th minute but his shot didn’t trouble Hennesey. Just two minutes later a forward run from Austin brought the first goal of the match. The midfielder played in Ross McCormack but the striker still had it all to do. He had the option of playing in Smith but the Scot trusted his own ability and struck a superb strike that beat Hennesesy at his far post. More good defending from United prevented the away side having the chance to equalise. Kevin Dawson broke down the left side of the field but a great covering slide tackle from Tom Lees thwarted the winger. With the game 58 minutes old Dexter Blackstock recieved a warm welcome as he made his Elland Road debut when he replaced Smith up front. On the hour mark Austin was once again causing the away side problems with his power and ability to run forward with the ball. Once he was far enough forward he struck but the ball took a deflection and went over the bar. Moments later Kenny had his hands tested and he had to be on his toes when a free-kick needed pushing over the bar. In the 67th minute United doubled their lead and it was McCormack with his second of the afternoon. The striker was played through beautifully by Austin and McCormack made no mistake and slotted the ball past the onrushing keeper with ease. United were almost three ahead moments later when Blackstock had a shot on goal, but his strike deflected just wide. With 15 minutes of the game remaining the away side were close to clawing one back when a poor clearance was collected by the Yeovil frontmen. The ball was slidded across the edge of the area but Joe Edwards could only watch as his shot went inches wide. Although the away side were pushing forward in the remaining minutes, it was United who looked the more comfortable on the ball after a scoring brace from McCormack and saw the game out. The performance wasn’t great by any means but it was all about getting the three points which they did. Byram wasn’t risked and he was missed, but this was a shadow of the side that hammered Birmingham. Results went our way and we are three points off 5th. The next time Leeds play at home, the Louth Branch will be there.Speaking after the game, McCormack said,“I’ve had some stick for not  scoring enough but I’ve made a career out of proving people wrong.” McDermott said, “It is actually my best start to the season as a  manager. “If we there or thereabouts at the end of December and get some  momentum going, you never know what can happen in this league.”  “I thought it was a bit  tense and edgy in the first half. “We worked really hard and the players  got their rewards. “It was a tough game in the first half but that is the  championship. We are trying to learn to win games as a group. “We had to  grind out a result and there was a lot of tension in the ground. Ross scored  early in the second half and the tension was quickly relieved.”