Warnock vows to transform poor Leeds

PA Sport
Neil Warnock
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Neil Warnock

Neil Warnock has pledged to never again preside over a Leeds United team like his current one after they slumped to another abject defeat, this time a 2-0 loss to Derby.

It was United's 10th home reversal of the season, with goals from Craig Bryson and Steven Davies confirming their position of Championship also-rans.

"The end of the season can't come quickly enough," the veteran manager said. "I said to (Derby manager) Nigel Clough at the end, 'Enjoy this, Nigel, because you'll never see another Leeds United team or a Neil Warnock team like this'."

Warnock, known as a promotion expert, was given the Elland Road reins after Simon Grayson's sacking in February and has spent the last seven weeks running the rule of the squad he inherited.

He said: "We had a lot of players playing today that know they won't be here next season. We've not got enough Leeds United-type players. We don't revel in the atmosphere and that's what we will do next year. We will revel in it."

Friday's 2-0 defeat at Reading saw United receive criticism, with their robust, tough-tackling display reminiscent of days gone by when the club picked up its 'Dirty Leeds' tag. Michael Brown was sent off 26 minutes into this game for a studs-up tackle on Theo Robinson.

Warnock said: "We all saw (Manchester City striker) Mario Balotelli's tackle at the weekend and I think refs have been watching it. You don't have to put them in that situation and Michael is wrong to do so. Putting his foot high gave him an excuse.

"But the referee said to Danny Pugh in the tunnel before the game, 'I saw your game on Friday'. I think that's pre-meditated, totally wrong and out of order."

The win was Derby's sixth in 10 matches and, had they had more than four games remaining, a play-off push may not have been out of the question. They are five points shy of sixth place as things stand.

"I want to try to keep these lads together," Clough said. "Two or three of them are out of contract. I want to try to keep them and the spirit together and take the confidence into next August."

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