Tag: Leeds United

Match Of The (Mid)Week: Leeds United 2-1 Bradford City

Spare your sympathy for the League Cup. It has a massive live match on Sky Sports and a place in UEFA Cup as a reward for the winners. There are no such rewards for the Johnstones Paint Trophy, the first round of which was played last night. Started by the Football League as the Football League Trophy in 1983, it continues to suffer what could be described as “an image problem”. Perhaps it’s the less than glamourous sponsors. Perhaps it’s the fact that there are few big names that have ever taken part in it. To say that the competition is a complete failure, however, is some way wide of the mark. In 1988, 80,000 turned out to see Burnley and Wolverhampton Wanderers play a match that was pivotal in the near revival in the fortunes of both clubs after having had a wretched time of it in the previous few seasons. Big names such as Wigan Athletic (who, admittedly, weren’t a big name at the time), Birmingham City and Stoke City have all won it twice. Nowadays the final is back at Wembley, and last season’s final was one of the more distressing events of the year, with football’s least favourite franchise beating Grimsby Town there. This year, however, is a clean slate. Crowds for last night’s first round were low, but not as apocalyptic as some might...

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A Kewelling Off Period

It’s unlikely that Leeds United will be playing Galatasaray in the next couple of years or so. An element of racour still exists between the two clubs following serious crowd disturbances surrounding their Champions League matches played in 2000 which resulted in the death of two Leeds supporters in Istanbul. The subsequent police investigation and failure to prosecute those suspected of having committed the murders has left an arguably justified feeling of injustice in that particular corner of West Yorkshire, but the reaction to Harry Kewell’s decision to join the Turkish club has demonstrated that there can be such a thing as an over-reaction to such a set of circumstances. Kewell’s departure from Leeds to Liverpool was shrouded in controversy, with rumours abounding that Kewell’s agent, Bernie Mandic, ended up pocketing a sizeable amount of the transfer fee. It would be pushing the bounds of credibility to suggest that Kewell’s spell at Anfield was an unqualified success – he’s probably best remembered amongst Liverpool supporters for his early substitution in the 2005 European Cup Final. At this stage in his career, a move away from the Premier League might prove to be the right thing for him, but Leeds supporters have hardly been sympathetic to his choice of clubs. Whilst the choice of club has been unfortunate, it’s difficult to see what Leeds United’s supporters stand to gain from...

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