Leeds United Message Board
Leeds has achieved an unbeaten run with players, and an adaptable 4-3-3/4-5-1 system, that have performed (relatively) consistently for a couple of months. However, change is inevitable and Leeds must adapt to changing circumstances if it is to stay in the chase for success and possible promotion this term.
For the next few, important, matches, the critical area of Leeds’ midfield will be uncertain. The football brain of Kilkenny (on Socceroo duty) and the power of Johnson, who may go to another club, will leave Leeds vulnerable to attack.
Because of the strength of its squad, Leeds has existing replacement options – Faye, Nunez, Clayton (if recalled). It could also use strikers like McCormack, Paynter, or Somma; wingers like Sam, Watt, Snodgrass, or Gradel; or a defender like Bromby, to cover.
However, signing new players for these strategic and defensive midfield positions is, probably, Simon Grayson’s best option. Ken Bates has indicated that he will support his manager in the January transfer window. Indeed, as proof, Andy O’Brien signed; yet we, kinda, knew that would happen and it seems unlikely that Leeds will have new midfielders in place before we face Cardiff.
On the other hand, our opponents on Tuesday, Cardiff, have been faster in signing new players. Jon Parkin, ‘The Beast’, who bullied our defence in the 4-6 home game loss to Preston, could be playing upfront for Cardiff after signing for £100,000 on New Year’s Day.
The Cardiff game could be a nightmare for Simon Grayson’s team. It will threaten repeats of Leeds’ worst defeats this term. For some time, Leeds has known it has weaknesses in midfield and defence but has been slow to address them. Even if Leeds was to bring in a player like Michael Johnson to sure up its midfield, there is not enough time for him to gel with our players.
To get anything out of the game at Cardiff, Leeds will have to dig deep into the resources it has already and hope that its team spirit, work-rate, and luck will win through.
A realist, or a bookmaker, would not give Leeds good odds on getting a result against Cardiff but, hey, in football, the unlikely is possible – think Man U v Leeds last year!
‘Sorry, Bryan, I spotted that weird verse on sheet music while trying, for the first time, to sing (the full version of) ‘Auld Lang Syne’ on New Year’s Eve. I wanted to use it and you gave me the opportunity. I hope I have not put my ‘clever clog’ in it. No offence intended… However, the idea of cheerleaders at Eland Road could produce a few perks for the Club!
Of course Andy there is another way of looking at things. Cardiff who were supreme and topped the table are on such a miserable run of form that spirits must be "plumbing the depth" and if young Mr Gradel gets an early goal, well it could be quite a different story ! C'mon the Whites .....
- 1 Reply to B4ts
Andy, Bats, Bryan! Great Posts, sachlich und informative. without being too Gung Ho I would like to say that your posts, especially Andy`s would give any Leeds support encouragement for the future of the team! They admit weaknesses, which have been quite apparent to all and as the Captain Of the Titanic, Will Smith, said, no amount of shoring up will save the ship, there has to be an injection of sufficient strength, midfield Bryan? that will enable us to resist high pressure attacks from "On form" Strikers? I`ll leave that there as technical talk is not my line, being always out of my depth as the Vicar said to the mermaid! We are all of a mind that the Cardif, badiff? game is crucial?
Well McCartney's gone, the strikers we bought aren't striking, we are looking jaded - so what's needed?
I still say we need a great creative midfielder, but who?
The Cardiff game is looking like a nightmare as the defence will be leaky again and the strikers aren't working (Becchio's great run must come to an end sometime).
Let's hope we don't get shell shocked by the gunners and can keep up the good work for the rest of the rest of the season.
Still feeling quietly confident I think, but Forest could be a big danger to auto promo!
- 1 Reply to BRYAN
Many sides in the Championship have greater spending power than Leeds (QPR and Notts Forest, for example) while others, like Cardiff, are spending beyond their means in a gamble to get promotion.
It would be great to see Leeds bring in a couple of star players, but they may not make that much difference to the way in which Simon Grayson has the team playing at present, especially if they do not gel.
In the existing squad, we have potentially star players that have hardly seen a game. These players have been with us long enough to sync with the Leeds team ethos and, if given the chance, will give their all to gain a first team place.
I do not think we should fear teams with 'quality' personnel as we are developing our own and they are part of an integrated team.