It has now been over ten years since Leeds United suffered relegation from the Premier League to the Championship.
Since then a lot has happened. Two play-off final defeats, thirteen managers, administration and a fifteen point deduction. Not even to mention, the confusion and disputes about ownership of the club.
Leeds United suffered relegation from the Premier League in the 2003-04 campaign. Since then, the closest they have come to regaining their Premier League status is losing out to Watford in the play-off final in 2006.
But the soap opera that is Leeds United didn’t go and build on this. They found themselves in administration and due to a points deduction were relegated the following year.
But two seasons later, Leeds returned and looked real contenders to make a claim in the Championship for top spot. But Leeds have never really challenged since returning.
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So what do Leeds United need to secure their place back in the Premier League?
Well firstly, Massimo Cellino looks as though in his short reign has done more damage than good in his brief time as owner. Cellino managed to sell star striker Ross McCormack, as well as seemingly sacking manager Brain McDermott, not once, but twice.
If Cellino continues on as the owner, then he will need to lie low and keep himself out of any unnecessary headlines. This will allow the team to blossom and get the headlines for on pitch performances, and not the drama off of it.
Neil Redfearn has finally been instated as manager, after three previous spells as caretaker. Redfearn seems to understand the player’s needs and manages to draw out a real fighting spirit from his squad.
Redfearn also seems popular with the fans, much like McDermott, therefore it is key Cellino keeps the fans onside by not making any hasty decisions.
On paper, the squad that Leeds have at their disposal is not the best.
However, there plus points within the side to look at. Sam Byram burst on to the scene a couple of seasons back in defence and has even featured for England Under-21s in that role. On loan midfielder, Adryan, looks a phenomenal talent (if you look past his diving) but at the age of 20 is still very raw and has a lot to learn.
Summer signings Mirco Antenucci and Souleymane Doukara have both proved they know how to score, netting seven each in the league. Another summer signing, Billy Sharp, could prove vital later in the season, as he is a proven goal scorer in the Championship.
The current Leeds squad just does not look good enough to secure promotion, it will require some additions in January for the side to mount a promotion push.
Leeds need to add some quality in the middle of the park, as well as on the wings. In the January transfer window they should look to the lower leagues in order to strengthen.
Jose Baxter has impressed for Sheffield United in the early parts of the season and possibly a move to Leeds United may be too good to refuse. Dean Hammond of Leicester City, could also be a brilliant addition to the middle of the park. He has not featured as much as he would have liked this season therefore possibly opening up a loan move.
But who knows with the real life soap opera that is Leeds United.
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