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Managing Leeds: Brave or Stupid?

Started on 26 May 2016 by joshleedsfan
Latest Reply on 4 September 2016 by joshleedsfan
Zach Clough is a top signing!



Everton 2-3 Leeds United

Callum Wilson 7, 17, 20
Chuba Akpom 72
Joel Robles og 90+2

Another sluggish start that's becoming all too typical of this team. We were hit by three goals in twenty minutes and it looked for a long time as if it was game over. I was hoping Akpom's goal would be a sign but we left it way too late to even make it close.

Newcastle United 1-0 Leeds United

Gerard Moreno 61

This was a close game, although not in the sense that we could have won it. We were average, and Newcastle were no better, but they got the three points through a magnificent goal from Gerard Moreno.

Leeds United 2-2 Liverpool

Michael Morrison 38
Lazar Markovic 44, 58
Stuart Dallas 78

This was a much improved performance that could have seen us snatch a win on another day. A draw against Liverpool was what started our last run of good form, so I'm hoping for the same again.

Leeds United 3-0 Swansea City FA Cup Fifth Round

Hope Akpan 14
Craig Dawson 59
Chuba Akpom 75
Jordan Ayew pen 90

A much more improved performance, although the Swansea manager is likely to be fuming about his team's performance. They made us look good (although we're not too bad) and chances are, they'll be champing at the bit to make an improvement at their place when we play them in the league next month.

West Ham United 1-2 Leeds United

Dimitri Payet 15
Stefano Giacomelli 42
Chuba Akpom 50

At long last, we finally have our first league win since Boxing Day. Europe seems lost in the distance now, but there's prize money for league places and that won't stop us from kicking on to try and achieve as high a league finish as possible.

Arsenal 2-1 Leeds United Capital One Cup Final

Jordan Ayew 66
Danny Welbeck 83
Ivan Piris 90+2
Calum Chambers 90

A bitterly disappointing final in which the actions of one player put the rest of the team under pressure.I was hoping we could hold out for extra time to regroup but it wasn't to be. We'll learn from this and hope to do better in the future.


Points-wise, we are halfway between relegation and 5th place, with a 12-point cushion each way. We have a lot of winnable fixtures between now and the end of the season so I hope we can finish high, and it would be a dream season if we made it into the top half.
Unlucky in the cup final, but you have done a great job since taking charge. Keep up the good work



Leeds United 0-1 West Bromwich Albion

Andreas Pereira 73

Injuries are crippling this team at the moment, and it was evident once again in this game. We lacked any real solidity at the back and were very slow going forward. A far cry from the days when the likes of Gradel, Bamba, Taylor and Alireza were all fit to play.

Aston Villa 1-0 Leeds United FA Cup Quarter Final

Leandro Bacuna

On top of injuries, a number of players were also cup-tied for this game which really left us thin on the ground. We couldn't quite replicate our League Cup exploits in the FA Cup and lost to a freak goal scored by what was intended to be a cross. At least we now only have to focus on the league.

Swansea City 0-1 Leeds United

Chuba Akpom

Wins seem to come few and far between in this calendar year and although we won, our luck since Christmas was summed up when Akpom was taken off with a back strain just minutes after scoring. We held on to what might well prove to be a vital three points by the end of the season.

Leeds United 3-4 Stoke City

Juan Carlos 11
Loic Remy 32, 39, 65
Bradley Dack 64
Zach Clough 72
Kalvin Phillips 90

Don't let the scoreline fool you. We weren't unlucky, we weren't close, it was just an utter cluster fuck from start to finish. We got some goals, but they meant little against a catalogue of defensive errors that led to Stoke's goals, with the alarming lack of ability to mark a player and a complete ignorance of the offside trap I had instructed the players to set out.


Our poor form hasn't knocked us too far down the table, and we still remain 12 points clear. Depending on the winner of the FA Cup, we are also 12 points behind a European place, and April is our last chance to take one last swing at qualification.


In a month of few highlights, experienced left-back Giovanni Marchese has caught the eye as one of our better players. He's stepped up well into a wing back role in the abesnce of Charlie Taylor to compensate for the breaking down of our flair out wide, also due to injuries. Taylor will have a job on his hands to get his place back in the team when he's fit again, with Marchese playing so well.



Chelsea 1-2 Leeds United

Lewis Cook 19
Zach Clough 25 Patrick Bamford 81

Our amazing record against Chelsea continues. We've now taken four points from our two league meetings, and have beaten them twice at Stamford Bridge. We caught them out with the same brand of counter-attacking football that's caught them out in the previous two meetings, and I couldn't be happier for my two goalscorers, not least because Zach Clough has finally scored again.

Leeds United 1-0 Sheffield Wednesday

Souleymane Doukara

The league table and form seem to go out of the window whenever we play Sheffield Wednesday. Neither side looked particularly dominant, and given they're in the bottom three, Wednesday will be kicking themselves for not getting anything from this.

Crystal Palace 1-3 Leeds United

Bradley Dack 23, 65
Souleymane Doukara 49
Wilfried Zaha 76

With 5 games left to play after this one, we were 14 points clear of relegation whereas Palace were in 17th place, 1 point clear going into the game. Therefore if you do the maths, this was the game that secured our survival. We couldn't have put in a better performance for one of the key games of the season and it summed up our status as the surprise package in this division.

Leeds United 0-1 Leicester City

N'Golo Kante 40

After our good run of form and last week's heroics, this game felt somewhat anti-climactic. We were second best all afternoon and given the number of shots they had, Leicester should have had us dead and buried within the hour.

Watford 1-3 Leeds United

Benik Afobe 6
Stuart Dallas 18
Max Gradel 24
Troy Deeney 38
Simone Padoin 39

We made a flying start to this match and as you can see, we won it in 25 minutes. It was great to see Afobe finally score his first goal and to see Gradel score after a long injury lay-off. It was a fitting end to one of the better months of our season.


Our impressive late-season form has seen us claw back 7th place by 6 points. Once again, I won't be too disappointed if we don't make it, but given we actually play Man United in May, it wouldn't hurt to have a go, particularly now relegation is no longer a worry for us. Our form hasn't gone unnoticed by the FA, as I was nominated for and finished second in the Manager of the Month stakes.


Cook has been in sensational form, and has even caught the eye of the league's player award board. This month has seen Cook nominated for and come second in the Premier League Player of the Month award and win the Premier League Young Player of the Month award. He'll look back on his opener against Chelsea with particular fondness.
Fantastic result against Chelsea! Cook is a beast on this game!


Leeds United have announced a partnership with longstanding British sports brand Umbro. The deal will last until the end of the 2019/20 season, and will see Umbro produce the club's training equipment and design training wear and the kits.

Lewis Cook and Chuba Akpom were called into Elland Road to model the new kits, whilst new signing Ki Sung-Yeung was called to Umbro's Manchester headquarters for a special photoshoot to be released in his native South Korea, where he is a national hero.


The home kit will see the club don its traditional all-white kit, with blue trim on the front of the shoulders and the end of the sleeves. The collar will assume a simplistic design, coloured gold. Leeds fans may take well to the design, with the subtlety of the trim allowing for the plain white that the fans know and love.


After two years of playing in yellow away from home, Leeds United will return to blue, a colour that has been met with mixed reviews, depending on the quality of the kit. This year, the away kit will be primarily dark blue, with yellow pinstripes on the torso and white pinstripes on the sleeves. As with the home kit, the collar will be gold with a simple design. This kit may be comparable to the away kit Leeds wore in the 2003/04 season when the club were relegated from the Premier League, but hopefully the fans will be able to look past that, and the players will be determined to not let it be an omen.

*Editor's note: I didn't do a story on this last season although I did change my kit. Designs for the kits worn in the 2016/17 season can be seen in the spoilers below


It's been a busy summer at Elland Road, as the transfer window saw Leeds United spend £64.5m on 16 players. Granted, 8 of them were signed for a combined total of £3.5m with a view to developing them for the future, but the other eight makes for a large number of players, for a considerable outlay of £61m.

For the senior squad, Josh Townend confirmed the signings of Felipe Caicedo, Ki Sung-Yeung, Yordy Reyna, Giorgian de Arrascueta, Wojciech Szczesny, Neven Subotic, Andre Poko and Sergi Gomez.

Felipe Caicedo (ST)

Felipe Caicedo will ring a bell with English fans for his spell with Man City, who snapped him up for £5m from Basel. His career never really took off in Manchester, and he had loan spells with Sporting Lisbon, Malaga and Levante. Levante signed him permanently, and spells with Lokomotiv Moskow, Al-Jazira and Espanyol followed before an £8m switch to Napoli last summer. Things didn't quite work out for Caicedo at San Paolo, so he departed Italy for a fee of £4.3m. He has made 269 league appearances and scored 70 goals. He's also established himself in the Ecuador national team, with 21 goals from 75 games.

Ki Sung-Yeung (MC)

Ki Sung-Yeung is also no stranger to the English game, counting Swansea, Sunderland and Chelsea as his former employers. He earned himself a £7.75m move to Real Madrid last summer, but was unable to make an impression at the Santiago Bernabeu, and was signed by Leeds for a fee of £5.25m. He still has a big reputation in his native South Korea, and if nothing else comes of this transfer, Leeds could well be the latest English club to see their reputation skyrocket in the Far East.

Sergi Gomez (DC)

One signing with a growing reputation in England is Sergi Gomez, Leeds' (chronologically speaking) last signing, arriving from Everton for £10m. Although not a regular at Goodison Park, Gomez has had a year and a half that he can look back at with pride, racking up a total of 37 appearances in all competitions on Merseyside. He signed for Everton from Celta Vigo for £5.75m in January 2016, and is a product of the Barcelona youth setup at La Masia.

Neven Subotic (DC)

Another Leeds signing to have only recently descended on to the English game is former Borussia Dortmund centre-back Neven Subotic. Subotic signed for Crystal Palace in January 2016 for £2.8m, a bargain for a player that was once regarded as a key player at the Signal Iduna Park. He's rebuilt his reputation since his arrival at Selhurst Park, and will hope to pick up where he left off as he moves North to Yorkshire.

Wojciech Szczesny (GK)

Rounding off those who have played here before comes a name that will resonate with goalkeeper admirers across the country, as Wojciech Szczesny finally leaves Arsenal, a club for whom he signed 11 years ago from Legia Warsaw for £34,000. He's had loan spells with Brentford and more recently Roma, and arrives at Elland Road for £10m.

Giorgian de Arrascueta (AML)

As for those playing in this country for the first time, Giorgian de Arrascueta is a name that catches the eye. He was signed from Cruzeiro for a fee of £3.9m, although 80% of his financial rights were owned by his agent- common practice in Brazil, but recently made illegal in Europe- so Leeds had to purchase the other 80% in order to be able to sign him at all. The deal has cost the club a total of £16m, and although his form in Brazil has been impressive, it remains to be seen whether he justifies the effort and the money it took to bring him from sunny Belo Horizonte to the rainy Leeds, West Yorkshire.

Yordy Reyna (AMR)

The most expensive signing- in terms of money paid to the player's old club- is pacey Peruvian winger Yordy Reyna. Reyna first arrived in Europe at the start of the 2013/14 season, as he signed for Austrian side Red Bull Salzburg for £2.1m. Loan spells at FC Liefering, SV Grodig and RasenBallsport Leipzig followed before he finally established himself in the first team setup at Salzburg. He earned himself a £4m move to Palermo last summer and has shown some impressive form in Serie A before his move to Leeds.

Andre Poko (DM)

Last, but not least, is steely Gabonese defensive midfielder Andre Poko. Poko has spent the last six years playing for Girondins de Bordeaux in the French Ligue 1. He's shown some very impressive form in France and has established himself in the Gabonese national setup, and many will argue that a £7.5m move to Leeds United of the Premier League could be his big break.

Great season back in the top flight mate and some really good signings there! Another great season in front of you i feel!
Great story mate.

Currently doing a Leeds save myself. Got them up first season too, but struggling in the Premier League. Currently 19th just before January....been given 22 million to turn our fortunes around in the transfer window. Imperative to make good signings.

Having issues at the back...going to look into signing Cyrus Christie now as well. :)
Well that is a rather quiet transfer window I guess ;) Leeds are a hard team to be so you are doing extremely well!
mgriffin2012: Cheers mate, good to still have you reading along!

Tshepo: Good luck with your save. I got by with a counter-attacking style of play in my first seaon in the top flight. I find it best to place more importance on the more winnable games (your West Hams, West Broms, Sunderlands etc)

BeanyUnited: Cheers mate. When we struggled towards the end of the Championship, I didn't think we'd go up, and then when we got one point from our first six games in the PL, I thought we were going down. Just goes to show anything can happen in football
Hey guys,

Can't really motivate myself to start another save and this one was a half decent one. So I will be resurrecting my story. I'm nearly in January having played the game in small patches here and there, so I will post up to where I've got so far. Hope you enoy!


I know I had promised to revive the story and to those who had enjoyed reading it before, I apologise. I'm at the start of the the 2018/19 season so there will be a two-part recap and catch-up post in which I will document briefly the 2015-17 era to recap, and then to get up to speed, the catch-up part will document the 2017/18 season. So here goes part 1- recap...


As anyone who followed this story in the early stages will know, in my first season in charge, we won promotion to the Premier League via the playoffs. It was a long hard slog, in which the team was eventually dragged up a division kicking and screaming, but it was a valiant effort overall.

As the table shows, we finished in 4th after a win and a draw put an end to a woeful run of form at just the right time. As the image below shows, we made it to Wembley after beating Cardiff on penalties, following a 3-3 aggregate result. Two goals from Mirco Antenucci were enough to win us promotion in the final against Brighton.

We signed two players that season, both from Viacenza. Winger Stefano Giacomelli arrived for a fee of £300,000 whilst left-back Salvatore D'Elia was signed for £275,000. The former bagged 16 assists and 5 goals in 29 appearances, with an average rating of 7.38. D'Elia made 7 appearances, with an average rating of 6.82.

Among our better players that season were Lewis Cook (spoiler alert, he still features heavily in the team), Stefano 'Lord of the Wings' Giacomelli and Souleymane 'Assassin' Doukara.


Our first season back in the top flight was a successful one, and one in which we achieved a 10th-placed finish. It wasn't all plain sailing however, being rock bottom with 1 point from our first 6 games was a cause for concern, but we bounced back and stormed our way up to a respectable mid-table finish.

The highlights of our dealings in the transfer market included the return of winger Max Gradel as he arrived from Bournemouth for £7.5m, the controversial signing of Koray Gunter from fierce rivals Galatasaray, the loan-turned-permanent signing of Arsenal's Chuba Akpom, the signing of his Gunners team mate Isaac Hayden for £4.5m and the bargain buy of Gillingham's Bradley Dack for just shy of £1m.

Among our star players in the 2016/17 were Lewis Cook (who also made his England debut that season), Bradley Dack (regarded as signing of the season), top scorer Chuba Akpom and the returning Max Gradel.

That's it for the recap. I will be back with part 2 of this post- the catch-up.

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