Monday, 18 March 2013
GFH Capital to blame for Leeds United's failure this season
But is this fair? Warnock was the fans' choice when he was appointed and, when I mocked his signings in the summer, Leeds fans sent hate mail, organised virtual death squads and wished cancer upon myself and my family, children included. Now those very same individuals are claiming that Warnock was not up to the job and that the players he brought in are "dead wood" for the most part. Well what did they expect when he recruited players relegated with Portsmouth, Doncaster and Coventry?
The point is, we can all be wise after the event, but very few of you were wise before it. When I warned that the protracted take over negotiations stank of something rotten, the fire of hatred flared higher. When I asked questions about GFH Capital's financial well being, I was mocked. When I predicted a maximum of £2m would be invested in the January window, I was subjected to howls of derision. When I said that Becchio would go, even as Warnock was saying he was going nowhere, burning crossed hammers blazed all across Leeds.
And now I will give you another prediction. Warnock's departure will change nothing. He has saddled the squad with aged yard dogs because that's all he was allowed to sign.
Why did Becchio go? Because Leeds would not meet his wage demands. Why did Wood join Leicester? Because Leeds could not afford his wages. And who was running Leeds by that stage? GFH Capital.
And why are Leeds all but out of the running for a play off place? Because of the lack of a true goal scorer. Since Bechio's departure, Leeds have scored twice in only three games (out of eleven) and Warnock's Wonders have not scored three in any one of those games. Indeed, it took a penalty to get Leeds to two goals in one of those three "high scoring" matches.
What happened to the transfer war-chest that GFH Capital suggested would be available in January? I distinctly remember them saying that they would back the manager and his drive to make the playoffs. Well if that is "backing", God help Warnock's successor - for with a playoff place within reach, the new Board showed a profit on January transfer fees!
Tell me, where was the sense in that if GFH genuinely harbour aspirations of guiding Leeds into the Prem? Next season, the club will start again on zero points and level with every other team in the division. In January, Leeds were hovering in eighth to tenth place, well ahead of the majority of the division. Sensible investment at that stage could have opened the door to the Promised Land of the Prem. But GFH Capital declined to make that investment. Why?
Leeds fans, in classic revisionist style, are now clutching at the straw that the Arab bank built on sand is simply keeping its powder dry, biding its time, waiting for Warnock to go before pumping in oil money. Oh yes? Then why did they let Warnock bring in Morison and Warnock Junior and why was Hell Hadji given a contract extension and why have the old yard dogs that populate the squad been given two and three year deals? If you have written off the season, write it off. If you have decided to jettison the manager, don't entrust more money to him, not a single penny.
If fact, if Warnock was always going, why didn't the club sack him? If he isn't up to the job, then appoint somebody who is whilst Leeds are still in with a shout of winning promotion for God's sake. But GFH Capital sat on their hands and prevaricated. Why? Because that was the cheapest and easiest option. Forest's new owners took action, and look at where Forest are now; Leeds United's new owners did nothing and look at where Leeds find themselves in consequence.
In truth, Leeds have achieved a par score given what Warnock had to operate with. But what exactly were GFH Capital up to between June and December when the club desperately needed stability and an injection of cash? How the hell did that deal take so long to finalise and why weren't the Arabs in a position to fund new signings if they only paid the rumoured £24m for a controlling stake in the club?
It feels slightly odd for me to be defending Warnock but I really do think he is getting a raw deal now. He is what he is and he did his level best. But GFH Capital seem like a shady outfit, big on promises and small on substance.
Will investment come this summer? I suspect only if the Arabs move Leeds on to another buyer. But as they are finding, and as Leeds fans will wake up to one day, history counts for nothing, it is the here and now that matters. Clubs relegated from the Prem will be richer still from now on and the parachute payments will dwarf anything Leeds can offer without a money bags benefactor - and Financial Fair Play will put the club in a corset anyway. The time to act was January and GFH Capital naval gazed instead. Why? Probably because they didn't have the money to do anything else.
Posted by Hammersfan at 16:07