What the hell is going on at Leeds United? 10 days ago a home defeat at the hands of Huddersfield Town effectively ended another disappointing season, handing the club the perfect opportunity to dismiss the biggest dud manager in the 25 years I have been watching the team. Neil Warnock was so resigned to his fate (although not resigned enough to actually resign!) that he admitted his time was up and could understand the owners wanting to bring in a new man (although he quite fancied having a say in who that was going to be.)
So the buck was firmly passed to Salem Patel and David Haigh, the public face of GFH Capital, our new owners since December, the group who were going to drag us out of the wilderness and take us back to the Premier League. All they had to do was pull the proverbial trigger and fire the manager, knowing that a ready made replacement was available. Nigel Adkins, his financial settlement with Southampton settled, and known to be keen to take up the challenge seemed destined to step into the hotseat, with the overwhelming backing of the fans (71% in our own little poll). The chance to fill the gap was there to be taken and Adkins seemed to be the perfect fit.
And what has happened. Nothing. No heartfelt thanks to Neil for his epic failure, sending him to retirement in Cornwall. No appointment of the man with the plan to move us forward. Instead, as has happened so often when real decisions have to be made, we have entered another tedious round of takeover talks, with the apparent financial shortcomings of the current owners being highlighted once again, and another disappearing act from the twittersphere by Messrs Haigh and Patel.
With mixed messages coming from GFH Capital (who want to keep the club with investment) and their parent company GFH (who apparently have wanted to sell the club from day one) the club is once again in a state of limbo, with little in the way of real information, and the constant turning of the rumour mill from the ITK crowd. The future of the club apparently vary from billionaire Saudis taking over to the club entering administration.
Quite frankly I'm sick of it. As I write this piece it appears that Nigel Adkins, whilst being keen to take on the challenge at Elland Road, is about to take over a club that operates on a much more stable footing. It's another chance gone begging to kick start Leeds United as a football club, scuppered by the mess that Leeds United the business finds itself in.
It's time for GFH to put up or ship out. They have done some good things, ridding us of Ken Bates, attempting to reengage with the fans (although please don't try to tell us what to do a la Paint it White. As the song goes, we're Leeds United we don't give a f***) and certainly doing the right things in terms of ticket prices especially with the recently released season tickets. I also agree with them not spending any serious money in January. The decision to sell Becchio was Warnock's alone, and there was absolutely no reason to give him any more money to spend on journeymen thirtysomethings.
Whether there was any money to give to the manager is the key question. Our hopes of any investment in the playing side of the club are whittled away by every negative tweet, and with nothing positive to counter balance the bad news, the morale of the fans is being dragged even lower than it already was.
We are not asking for much from Salem and David. We have gathered that you are not the oil-rich billionaires we dreamed about with a long term vision of turning Leeds United into a footballing powerhouse. We are hoping that you are just middle men who had the patience to deal with Bates and negotiated the sale for an as yet unnamed (or perhaps named Mr Parkin?) third party for a nice commission and that come the summer you are but a distant memory. What we are now fearing is that you are potless chancers who hoped to make a quick buck and have bitten off far more than you can chew.
All we want to know is where we stand. Salem and David, I beg of you, please tell us your plans in plain forthright Yorkshire terms that we will understand and stop trying us to baffle us with financial doublespeak.
Oh and one final thing, please will you just sack Neil Warnock!