Saturday, 10 November 2012

Middlesbrough Ratchet Up Pressure On Leicester, Cardiff, Crystal Palace, Forest & Leeds


New day, new leaders of the Championship. Last season it was always pretty clear cut. Southampton led the way, with West Ham squarely on their shoulders - until Reading went on their amazing run and came through at the elbow to steal the glory.

Come the Prem, and the two automatically promoted clubs - although clearly the best two sides in the Championship - have struggled. It makes you wonder how any of this season's contenders would cope if, as a result of the stumbles of others, they chanced upon promotion.

Middlesbrough have now gone eight games without defeat and, on that basis, it could be argued that they are emerging as genuine Champions elect. But if Holloway's Palace win at Posh - and genuine promotion candidates should win at London Road - then the leadership baton will be transferred yet again.

What Boro's win has done is ratchet up the pressure on the other contenders, however. Suddenly Leicester, Cardiff, Forest and co have to win to stay in touch at the top, whilst the also rans like Leeds, Bolton and Birmingham know that any further widening of the gap will make their cause pretty hopeless.

Yes four wins could see Leeds pull level with Boro, but only if Boro lose three in a row; and meanwhile, all the other contenders have to lose to see Leeds move into a promotion place. In truth, Leeds already need to do a Reading to get up automatically, winning a seemingly impossible number of games in a row. Reading proved that this is not impossible...but even after their truly fantastic run, they still only finished three points above third placed West Ham.

Clearly the take over is crucial if Leeds are going to go on a charge because the current squad is hopelessly inadequate - as I repeatedly warned. Leeds fans wouldn't have it, insisting that even though Warnock was recruiting from relegated clubs, his cherry picking meant he was building a team that would challenge for automatic promotion; five wins from fifteen has given the lie to that one.

Today sees Leeds play another highly winnable game against modest opposition and anything less than victory would be truly disastrous. Should the take over happen, and should the funds be made available to Warnock, and should he choose the right players and should they agree to join Leeds - then the impossible may yet be achieved. But fall any further behind and it would be stretching credibility to believe that Leeds can still challenge this season.

That said, on December 10, 2011 I was at the Madejski to witness tenth placed Reading thump West Ham 3-0. True West Ham went down to 10 men before Reading woke up, and then Collison got himself sent off too, but Reading never looked back from that point and stormed the division. It shows it is possible and none of this season's sides are as strong as Southampton and West Ham were last season. Leeds fans can still hope...just.

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Starts off about The boro, ends up all about Leeds ? You are obsessed by the mighty whites my friend.

Anonymous said...

Not sure how Boro can be 'champions elect' for going on am 8 match unbeaten run, millwall are on about the same as Palace have gone 12!

Also Leeds wouldn't need to 'do a reading' as when it's more open the promoted teams finish on less points. For Leeds to win 3 games more than the sides above them with still 31 to play would not be that sensational. It's too early to draw thea e conclusions

I do agree that Leeds' squad isnt strong enough though and don't see them being up there at the end of the season. I think Bolton will kick on and be nearer the play offs and Burnley are a side to watch if they hold on to Austin in January. Millwall will also be right up there if they continue playing how they are

Anonymous said...

Another shit article from the worlds biggest wanker. MOT.

Anonymous said...

Did a Leeds fan give you a slap or steal your girlfriend acne boy lol? What did trolls do pre-internet days. Sad.

Anonymous said...

I don't see how Warnock is under any pressure.....

Everyone knows he has a squad put together for peanuts , so little is expected.

I dont see how there is pressure on Cardiff,palace,forest?

They are all just teams trying to do the best they can to get into the prem

All the teams are doing their best, thats it.

Just cos a few leeds fans go overboard with expectation...like all fans do...doest mean that is the consensus of opinion

As everyone agrees it is a mediocre Championship this year, as it was last year, it is a mediocre league one this year

The cycles of football.

Pressure comes on Warnock when he spends big on 3 or 4 players and then ends up the relegation zone.

How leeds losing today would be a disaster is a very strange comment?

Have a good weekend

Anonymous said...

Leeds are shit and so so is their deluded fans... always will be!

Anonymous said...

as strong as west ham were last season, yeah right, even as average as we were last season cant recall the strong west ham beating leeds pal. you were lucky to go up.

Anonymous said...

I agree with this article. It is time for us Leeds fans to be objective, whilst still hold our faith.

Simple this lot in the Middle East need to pull their fingers out, along with cheque book and pen. No rubber consistancy cheques please!

Charlie Austin is an ideal starting point for their so called binge of spending from the infamous warchest. If it actually exists. I will not forgive these would be saviours for their protracted negotiations with father christmas.

I for one will be pleased when Mr Xmas is confined to Lapland or Monaco, whichever is further.

Get the midfield sorted out, two fit good attacking midfielders please. A good centre half for cover and a young fit quality left back. A couple of wingers should do it. I seem to want more than even the manager thinks we need. If they wait till January, the way things are going Leeds will be close to the relegation spots not play off, if they play the way they are.

A post from a hopeful pragmatic Leeds fans.

Anonymous said...

Gosh, Leeds just made it into the headline almost as if an afterthought, then proceeded to dominate the article.

Not like Hammersfan to go off on a tedious tirade about Leeds!

Sign, yawn, predictable, boring.

By the way, Leeds, as you point out, are only 6 points off the playoffs.How many points off the pace were Reading when they embarked on this run you love referring to??

Anonymous said...

So ARE their deluded fans 1027, don't make this so easy.

Anonymous said...

Your a knob head

Anonymous said...

Leeds are shit & I am NOT a deluded fan

Sir Trevor Brooking's butler said...

I've just heard Leeds are 1-0 down to Watford ( WATFORD!) and are down to ten men after more violent behaviour.

It's not going at all well as they march on together,is it?

Sir Trevor is perturbed at these goings on.

Sir Trevor Brooking's butler. said...

Oh my!
Leeds have gone down to 9 men.

Gianfranco and his merry men coasting it!

I'm off now to press Sir Trevor's trousers,he's in a good mood now and has asked me to keep him in touch with events at Elland Road.

Sir Trevor Brooking's butler. said...

Leeds United 1 Watford 6


Sir Trevor has just left for a function this evening,and for some unknown reason he has an especially large spring in his step,marching on together with his lovely wife.

Anonymous said...

10.04 eat your words. come on hf i'm waiting for the leeds/watford review!

how does a team concede 6 at home to watford with 5 individule goal scorers?

oh yeah that's right its leeds and they're shite

James Hassett said...

Leeds losing 6-1 to Watford today, I bet you'll be all over it especially now you seem to focus on Watford more. without a lot of money in January Leeds can't go anywhere. I hope Leeds have nothing to play for as soon as possible and the takeover collapses, not because I hate Leeds although I do and to see them struggle is amusing.It is because you'll hopefully have nothing to say about them and you'll stop going on about Leeds and focus on West Ham, the team you allegedly support.

Anonymous said...

A six goals to one home defeat to Watford. No defence is acceptable for this.

I believe that if Neil Warnock is a rational, honest manager he should tender his resignation without delay.

Everything about the current regime stinks! Time to get real fellow Leeds fans. If this lot got into the Premiership without a 1000% improvement, records defeats will be the result.

I call upon a new buyer to come in and invest and rebuild. This lot in the middle east keep talking. The message I give to them is get lost, along with the current regime. Get someone in who cares about the club and its fans.

A disgusted Leeds Fan.