Leeds United: Review of 2009-2010
The 2009-2010 League One Football season finally saw Leeds United promoted from a division that their fans had been very eager to get out of. League One was the final destination after the whirlwind of financial mismanagement of previous regimes. For every Leeds fan playing League One football was a constant reminder of how far a great club like Leeds had fallen. The Leeds fans continued to show their support to their club, Leeds fans constantly pulled in excess of 25,000 in attendence figures for home games. And they regularly pulled in over 30,000. This was a good figure especially as ticket prices were still quite high comparable to other teams in the league. Leeds Uniteds average attendence was greater than a lot of the Premier League clubs this season.
League One 2009-2010
The 2009-2010 season could be described like an actual football match as been a game of two halves. Leeds started the season very swiftly and by December had really pulled away from the pack in the quest for automatic promotion to the Championship. Leeds had also made good progress in the domestic cups. Jermaine Beckford the clubs leading scorer for the past two seasons had been terrorising league one defences and Bradley Johnson was starting to show some serious intent on the wing. Even though the club were in a commanding position by the end of 2009 the fans on the terrace had some issues with certain areas of the team. The two main goalkeepers that season where Higgs and Ankergran. Higgs who arrived at the beginning of the campaign looked to have cemented his claim for the Keepers jersey but injuries throughout the season really took their toll on defensive stability. Ankergran was an able keeper but his authority in the box was never absoloute. Maybe the Leeds defence that was constantly changing personel made it hard for Casper to maintain clear level of communication.
Leeds United`s season started to fall away after their FA Cup giant killing of Manchester United in January 2010. Leading goal scorer Jermaine Beckford handed in a written transfer rrequestprior to the big match and went on to score the only goal of the game. Beckfords goal went on to make Beckford a star in the media spotlight and he was linked with every club after a goalmachine from Benfica to Liverpool. Leeds started a run from this point which saw their early season league position dwindle to the chasing pack of teams. Leeds just could not get any consistency going. The draw to the rejuvanated Spurs side in the cup was one of the few highlights of the end of season. By March Leeds were struggling to maintain the automatic promotion spot. Leeds eventually secured promotion on the last day of the season. Leeds did it the hard way by getting a man sent off in the first half but went on to pip Millwall and Charlton to the automatic promotion spot with a 2-1 victory over Bristol Rovers.
Leeds will finish where in the Championship 2010-11?
So far upto June 2010 the confirmed incoming players for next season will be....
The 2010-2011 Championship campaign will see the arrival of Billy Paynter on a free transfer, Manager Simon Grayson has been linked with a few Championship strikers since Beckford handed in his transfer request at the start of 2010. During the 2009-10 season Paynter was at Swindon Town where he managed to form a lethal strike partnership with fellow striker Charlie Austin, they scored a total of 49 goals between them. In total Paynter scored 29 goals for Swindon during the 2009-10 season and is seen as an ideal replacement for Everton bound top scorer Jermaine Beckford. Paynter has some big boots to fill, but Paynter seems optomistic about forming a strike partnership with Argentinian Luciano Beccihio. After turning down a new deal at Swindon Town, Paynter accepted a three–year deal with Leeds United after Swindon failed to gain promotion.
Another arrival for next season is former Notts County and Manchester City keeper Kasper Schmeichel,having been linked with both Premiership and Bundesliga clubs, Schmeichel signed a two year contract with Leeds. Kasper is the son of Manchester United legend Peter Schmeichel, who advised his son to join Leeds, saying it could rebuild his sons promising career. Kasper was very important in Notts Countys 2009-2010 promotion to League One. Having played for his company at various levels, Kasper will offer good and healthy competion for the number one jersey.
Former Derby captain Paul Connelly will join Leeds on a three year deal. The 26 year old right back will bolster the teams defensive options for next season. The Liverpool born defender is looking forward to joining the team as it is a good move for him.
Many fans hope and expect to see Chairman Ken Bates hand over to manager Simon Grayson adequete funds to get a back to back promotion this coming season.
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The once proud and majestic Leeds United Football club have finally escaped the confines of the third tier of the English League One. In an up and down season have Leeds United finally turned the corner? will Leeds be back in the Premier League soone