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Molegate Update: Shaun Derry innocent. No new suspects.

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Dennis WiseMolegate - the biggest scandal to hit Leeds United since ... come to think of it, Molegate pales in comparison to about 17 recent Leeds United-related scandals, despite being the only one with -gate attached to it. This is probably because Peter Ridsdale's Aquarium-gate doesn't have the same ring to it. I digress.

Leeds played Crystal Palace on February 10th, 2007 - a game which went down in history as the beginning of MOLEGATE. A Leeds player leaked a copy of the Leeds teamsheet to Crystal Palace the day before the game. Leeds manager Dennis "The Menace" Wise - who is really, really, really not someone you want to piss off, and was described by Alex Ferguson as "capable of starting a fight in an empty house" - spluttered furiously after the match that whoever was responsible "will not be playing for this club again."

Which is where Shaun Derry comes into it. He didn't play in the match against Crystal Palace, and never played for Leeds again after the scandal erupted. He was injured for most of that time, and Wise hasn't used him once in the month of games played since his return to fitness. All of this points to Wise considering him guilty of collaborating with Crystal Palace during Molegate. The argument is bolstered by Derry's links to Crystal Palace before the scandal: his Best Man, Danny Butterfield, played for Crystal Palace at the time.

I say "bolstered"; what I actually mean is that there was enough random, circumstantial evidence for the media, and the excitable lunatic fringe of Leeds fans, to declare Shaun Derry the reincarnation of Judas Iscariot and call for his public lynching. The fact that there was no evidence against him was irrelevant to many, including, apparently, Dennis Wise.

Derry told the Post this week that he wasn't the mole. Assuming he's telling the truth - and, to be honest, I've never believed he was the Mole anyway - who else could it be? I can't think of any suspects, although I'm sure Dennis Wise is formulating a list. We'll probably know when we spot a team member watching Leeds play from the stands with a heavily bandaged face.