Leeds United F.C.

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Leeds United
Full name Leeds United Football Club
Nickname(s) The Whites
The Peacocks
Founded 1919; 102 years ago (1919)
Ground Elland Road,
Beeston, Leeds
Ground Capacity 37,890[1]
Owner Massimo Cellino[2]
Chairman Massimo Cellino
Head coach Steve Evans
League The Championship
2014–15 The Championship, 15th
Website Club home page
Current season

Leeds United Football Club is an English football club in Leeds, West Yorkshire. The club was formed in 1919 following the disbanding of Leeds City F.C. by the Football League and took over their Elland Road stadium. They currently play in the Football League Championship, the second tier of the English football league system.

Leeds United have won three First Division league titles, one FA Cup and one League Cup. The club also won two Inter-Cities Fairs Cups. The majority of the honours were won under the management of Don Revie in the 1960s and 1970s. Leeds lost the 1975 European Cup Final against Bayern Munich and reached the semi finals of the tournament's successor Champions League in 2001.

Leeds United play in white. The club badge features the White Rose of York and "LUFC".[3]

History Summary

Pre-Leeds United

Leeds United's predecessor team, Leeds City, was formed in 1904, and were elected League members in 1905. At first they found it hard to draw big crowds to Elland Road but their fortunes improved following Herbert Chapman's arrival. In 1914 Chapman declared; "This city is built to support top-flight football", but Leeds City were forcibly disbanded and forced to sell off all their players by The Football League in 1919 in response to allegations of illegal payments to players during the First World War. In 1919, Leeds United was formed and they received an invitation to enter the Midland League. Leeds United were voted into the Midland League on 31 October 1919, taking the place vacated by Leeds City Reserves. Following Leeds City's disbanding, Yorkshire Amateurs bought their stadium Elland Road. Yorkshire Amateurs offered to make way for the new team under the management of former player Dick Ray.

The chairman of Huddersfield Town, Hilton Crowther loaned Leeds United £35,000, to be repaid when Leeds United won promotion to Division One. He brought in Barnsley's manager Arthur Fairclough and on 26 February 1920, Dick Ray stepped down to become Fairclough's assistant.

1920–1960: Early years

The first Leeds United team at the start of the 1920–21 season
A chart showing the progress of Leeds United through the English football league system

On 31 May 1920, Leeds United were elected to the Football League. Over the following few years, they consolidated their position in the Second Division and in 1924 won the title and with it promotion to the First Division. They failed to establish themselves and were relegated in 1926–27. After being relegated Fairclough resigned which paved the way for Ray to return as manager. In the years up until the start of World War II Leeds were twice relegated, both times being instantly re-promoted the following season.

On 5 March 1935, Ray resigned and was replaced by Billy Hampson, who remained in charge for 12 years. In the 1946–47 season after the war, Leeds were relegated again with the worst league record in their history. After this season, Hampson resigned (he stayed with Leeds as their chief scout for 8 months) and was replaced in April 1947 by Willis Edwards. In 1948, Sam Bolton replaced Ernest Pullan as the chairman of Leeds United. Edwards was moved to assistant manager in April 1948 after just one year as manager. He was replaced by Major Frank Buckley.

Leeds remained in the Second Division until 1955–56, when they once again won promotion to the First Division, inspired by John Charles. Charles was hungry for success at the highest level, and manager Raich Carter was unable to convince him that Leeds could satisfy his ambitions. Charles was sold to Juventus for a then world record of £65,000. The loss of Charles resulted in Leeds' being relegated to the Second Division in the 1959–60 season.

1961–1974: Don Revie era

File:Don Revie statue, Elland Road.jpg
Don Revie statue outside Elland Road

In March 1961, the club appointed former player Don Revie as manager, following the resignation of Jack Taylor. His stewardship began in adverse circumstances; the club was in financial difficulty[4] and in 1961–62 only a win in the final game of the season saved the club from relegation to Division Three. Revie implemented a youth policy and a change of kit colour to an all-white strip in the style of Real Madrid, and Leeds soon won promotion to the First Division in 1963–64. In his thirteen years in charge, Revie guided Leeds to two Football League First Division titles, one FA Cup, one League Cup, two Inter-Cities Fairs Cups, one Football League Second Division title and one Charity Shield. He also guided them to three more FA Cup Finals, two more FA Cup Semi-Finals, one more Inter-Cities Fairs Cup Final and one Inter-Cities Fairs Cup Semi-Final, one European Cup Winners' Cup Final and one European Cup Semi-Final. The team also finished second in the Football League First Division five times, third once and fourth twice. In a survey of leading football writers, historians and academics by Total Sport magazine, Revie's Leeds United were voted as one of the fifty greatest football teams of all time.[5]

1974–1988: Clough, Armfield, Stein, Adamson, Clarke, Gray and Bremner

Following the 1973–74 season, Revie left Leeds and Elland Road in 1974, to manage the England national team. Brian Clough was appointed as Revie's successor. This was a surprise appointment, as Clough had been an outspoken critic of Revie and the team's tactics.[6] Clough's tenure as manager started badly with defeat in the Charity Shield Match against Liverpool in which Billy Bremner and Kevin Keegan were sent off for fighting. Under Clough, the team performed poorly, and after only 44 days[7] he was dismissed.

Clough was replaced by former England captain Jimmy Armfield. Armfield took Revie's ageing team to the final of the 1974–75 European Cup, where they were defeated by Bayern Munich under controversial circumstances.[8] Assisted by coach Don Howe, Armfield rebuilt Revie's team, and though it no longer dominated English football, it remained in the top ten for subsequent seasons. However, the board became impatient for success and dismissed Armfield, replacing him with Jock Stein, who also lasted just 44 days before leaving to manage Scotland. The board appointed Jimmy Adamson but he was unable to stop the decline and in 1980 Adamson resigned and was replaced by former player Allan Clarke. Despite spending freely on players, he was unable to stem the tide and the club was relegated at the end of 1981–82. Clarke was replaced by former team-mate Eddie Gray.

With no money to spend on team building, Gray concentrated on youth development, but was unable to guide them to promotion from the Second Division.[9] The board again became impatient and sacked Gray in 1985, replacing him with another Revie team mate, Billy Bremner. Bremner found it just as difficult to achieve promotion, although Leeds reached the 1987 play-off final, but were defeated by Charlton Athletic. Leeds also endured a near miss in the FA Cup, losing out to Coventry City in the semi-finals.[10]

1988–1996: Howard Wilkinson era

In October 1988, with the team 21st in the Second Division, Bremner was fired to make way for Howard Wilkinson. Leeds avoided relegation that season, and in March 1989 signed Gordon Strachan from Manchester United for £300,000. The Scottish midfielder was named captain, and helped Leeds win the Second Division in 1989–90 and gain promotion back to the First Division.[11] Under Wilkinson Leeds finished 4th in 1990–91 and in 1991–92 season Leeds won the title. However, the 1992–93 season saw Leeds exiting the Champions League in the early stages, and eventually finishing 17th in the League, narrowly avoiding relegation. Wilkinson's Leeds were unable to provide any consistent challenge for honours, and his position was not helped by a poor display in the 1996 League Cup final which Leeds lost to Aston Villa. Leeds could only finish 13th in 1995–96, and after a 4–0 home defeat by Manchester United early in 1996–97, Wilkinson had his contract terminated. One of the legacies of Wilkinson and youth coach Paul Hart was the development of Leeds United's youth academy, and as a result, the academy has produced numerous talented footballers over the years.

1997–2001: Graham and O'Leary

A statue of former Leeds' captain Billy Bremner, outside Elland Road

Leeds appointed George Graham as Wilkinson's successor. This appointment was controversial as Graham had previously received a one-year ban from The Football Association for receiving illegal payments from a football agent.[12] Graham made some astute purchases and also helped blood youngsters from Leeds' successful youth cup winning side, and by the end of the 1997–98 season Leeds had qualified for the following season's UEFA Cup. In October 1998, Graham left to become manager of Tottenham Hotspur, and Leeds opted to replace him with assistant manager David O'Leary.

Under O'Leary and assistant Eddie Gray, Leeds never finished outside the top 5 in the Premier League, and secured qualification for both the UEFA Cup and the UEFA Champions League, enjoying cup runs to the semi finals of both competitions. However, during the same period, the team's image was tarnished when players Jonathan Woodgate and Lee Bowyer were involved in an incident which left an Asian student in hospital with severe injuries. The resulting court case took nearly two years to resolve; Bowyer was cleared, and Woodgate convicted of affray and sentenced to community service. Additionally, in the UEFA Cup semi-final against Galatasaray in Istanbul, two Leeds fans were stabbed to death before the game.[13][14]

2001–2007: Financial implosion and relegation

Under chairman Peter Ridsdale, Leeds had taken out large loans against the prospect of the share of the TV rights and sponsorship revenues from UEFA Champions League qualification and subsequent progress in the competition. However, Leeds narrowly failed to qualify for the Champions League in two successive seasons, and as a consequence did not receive enough income to repay the loans. The first indication that the club was in financial trouble was the sale of Rio Ferdinand to Manchester United for approximately £30 million. Ridsdale and O'Leary publicly fell out over the sale, and O'Leary was sacked and replaced by former England manager Terry Venables. Leeds performed badly under Venables, and other players were sold to repay the loans, including Jonathan Woodgate, who Ridsdale had promised Venables would not be sold. Tensions mounted between Ridsdale and Venables and with the team underachieving, Venables was sacked and replaced by Peter Reid. Ridsdale resigned from the Leeds board and was replaced by existing non-executive director Professor John McKenzie. At this time Leeds were in danger of relegation, but managed to avoid the drop in the penultimate game of the season.

Reid was given a permanent contract at Leeds the following summer, and brought in several players on loan. An unsuccessful start to the 2003–04 season saw Peter Reid dismissed, and Eddie Gray took over as caretaker manager until the end of the season. An insolvency specialist, Gerald Krasner, led a consortium of local businessmen which took over Leeds and oversaw the sale of the clubs' assets, including senior and emerging youth players of any value. Leeds were relegated during the 2003–04 season.

Following relegation to the Championship, assistant manager Kevin Blackwell was appointed manager. Most of the remaining players were sold or released on free transfers to further reduce the high wage bill; Blackwell was forced to rebuild almost the entire squad through free transfers, and Leeds were forced to sell both their training ground and stadium in the autumn of 2004.[15][16]

The board finally sold the club to Ken Bates for £10 million.[17] Under Blackwell, Leeds reached the Championship play-off final, which they lost to Watford.[18] With the team performing poorly, Blackwell's contract was terminated, and Leeds hired John Carver as caretaker manager, but his spell was not a success and he was relieved of his duties with Dennis Wise eventually installed as his replacement. Wise was unable to lift the team out of the relegation zone for much of the season, despite bringing in a number of experienced loan players and free transfers on short term deals. With relegation virtually assured, Leeds entered administration on 4 May 2007, thus incurring a league imposed 10-point deduction which officially relegated the club to the third tier of English football.[19][20] The club had previously never played any lower than the second tier of English football. The players that Wise had brought in were released; he was forced to build a squad almost from scratch, and because of administration Leeds were unable to sign any players until a few days before the opening game of the season.

2007–2010: League One

On 3 July 2007, HM Revenue & Customs lodged a legal challenge to the CVA.[21] Under league rules, if the club were still in administration at the start of the following season, Leeds would have been prevented from starting their campaign by the Football League.[22][23] Following the challenge by HMRC, the club was put up for sale by KPMG,[24] and again Ken Bates' bid was accepted.[25] The league eventually sanctioned this under the "exceptional circumstances rule" but imposed a 15-point deduction due to the club failing to exit administration with a CVA, as the Football League rules required.[26] On 31 August 2007, HMRC decided not to pursue their legal challenge any further.[27]

Despite the 15-point deduction, Wise and his assistant Gus Poyet guided Leeds to a playoff position, only for Poyet to leave for Tottenham, and Wise quit to take up a position at Newcastle United.[28] Wise was replaced by former club captain Gary McAllister.[29] Leeds went on to secure a place in the play-off final, but were beaten by Doncaster Rovers. The following season saw a poor run of results, and McAllister was sacked after a run of 5 defeats in a row. McAllister was replaced by Simon Grayson, who resigned from his post as manager of Blackpool to take the position.[30] Under Grayson, Leeds made the play-offs once again, but were beaten over the two legs of the semi-finals by Millwall.

In the 2009–10 season, Leeds secured the best start ever to a season by a Leeds side, and caused a major upset in the third round of the FA Cup by beating Manchester United at Old Trafford.[31] After the impressive run in the FA Cup, Leeds' league form suffered with the team taking just 7 points from a possible 24. However, the team rallied and Leeds won their final game of the season to confirm promotion to The Championship.

2010–2014: Return to The Championship

Leeds spent much of the season in the playoff places, but eventually finished in a respectable 7th place – just missing out on the playoffs.

In May 2011 it was announced that Leeds Chairman Ken Bates had bought the club and became the owner of Leeds.[32] Before the match against Middlesbrough, Leeds fans protested at Ken Bates about lack of investment in the playing side, to which Bates responded by calling Leeds fans 'morons'.[33]

Despite securing promotion to The Championship, Grayson was sacked after failing to mount a consistent challenge for promotion to the Premier League.[34] Neil Warnock was appointed as the club's new manager on 18 February, with his initial contract lasting until the end of the 2012–13 season.[35]

On 21 November 2012, Middle East-based private equity group GFH Capital finalised a deal for a protracted takeover of Leeds, gaining 100% shareholding in the club. It was also announced Ken Bates would remain as chairman until the end of the 2012–13 season and then become club president.[36] The takeover was officially completed on 21 December 2012.[37]

Despite runs to the quarter-finals of the League Cup and the fifth round of the FA Cup (albeit with both runs ending in five-goal thrashings by Chelsea and Manchester City respectively), Leeds's league form in the 2012–13 season was generally mediocre, with the club never making any real challenge for the play-off places, and Warnock resigned with six games remaining, and Leeds just five points above the relegation zone.[38] Brian McDermott replaced Warnock, and the club won three of their final five games of the season, enough to avoid relegation. That summer, Bates stepped down as chairman, and ultimately left the club altogether a few weeks later following a dispute over expenses.

On 7 January 2014, Leeds United's Managing Director David Haigh was involved in Sport Capital, a consortium involving the managing director of Leeds United's main sponsors, Enterprise Insurance, Andrew Flowers. Sports Capital came close to completing a transaction with GFH Capital that would have given them a 75% stakehold in the business.[39]

On 30 January, Sport Capital's takeover collapsed due to a lack of "financial backing". Haigh released a statement conceding that it was unable to complete a deal despite two months ago agreeing to purchase a 75% stake in the club from the owners Gulf Finance House. Haigh claimed he and Sport Capital had "injected substantial sums into the club to ensure its viability" but earlier in the week fellow consortium member Andrew Flowers, the managing director of Leeds' shirt sponsor Enterprise Insurance, stated that GFH had "breached their covenant with us" after inviting a rival bid from Massimo Cellino, the president of the Serie A club Cagliari Calcio.[40] Haigh's statement on his personal website read:

We [Sport Capital] signed a share acquisition agreement with GFH Capital at the end of last year. This meant, I believed, that we were in a position to move things forward and complete the transaction in time for the January transfer window. Unfortunately, however, some of the consortium's backers ultimately didn't feel able to deliver the financial backing we had hoped was agreed to take the club forward. I have met many, many potential investors over the past year and, sadly, while many are keen to talk the talk, they have been unable or unwilling to deliver in financial terms.[41]

On 31 January 2014, under controversial circumstances, it was reported that manager Brian McDermott had been removed from his position as the club's manager following a string of poor results while the controversy surrounding the club was resolved.[42] New club captain Ross McCormack expressed his support for the former manager.[43] By 3 February the BBC was reporting that McDermott had been called by a lawyer representing Massimo Cellino "and told he had been relieved of his duties", however, Cellino still did not own the club, as the Football League had not yet approved his purchase, so neither he, nor his lawyer, could sack the manager. McDermott, therefore remained manager.[44]

After weeks of speculation regarding the purchase of Leeds United,[45] on 7 February 2014, Leeds United had announced that they had exchanged contracts for the sale of Leeds to Cellino's family consortium Eleonora Sport Ltd. The deal saw the Cellino family acquire a 75% ownership of the club subject to Football League Approval.[46]

At its meeting on 23 March 2014, the Board of the Football League decided unanimously that Cellino's conviction by an Italian Court meant that he did not meet their Owners and Director's Test, so could not take over Leeds United. Cellino has 14 days from the date of the decision in which to appeal.[47]

In the backdrop of Cellino's takeover, Leeds suffered an appalling second half of the season, dropping from the play-off places to the fringes of the relegation battle. In the end, the weak performances of the teams below Leeds meant that they were never in any real danger of going down, and a late run of wins put survival beyond doubt well before the end of the season. However, McDermott still resigned his position a few weeks after the season ended.

2014–Present: The Cellino era

On 5 April, Cellino was successful in his appeal with independent QC Tim Kerr to take over the club.[48] The takeover was completed on 10 April with Cellino's company, Eleonora Sport Limited, buying 75 per cent of the club's shares.[49] Two months later, the inexperienced Dave Hockaday was surprisingly appointed head coach, with Junior Lewis hired as his assistant.[50] After only 70 days, the pair were fired by Cellino.[51][52] Darko Milanič was given the Head Coach position in September 2014, but left the club the following month.[53][54] On 1 November 2014, Neil Redfearn was confirmed as the new Head Coach.[55]

On 1 December 2014, Cellino was disqualified by the Football League after they obtained documents from an Italian court, where he was found guilty of tax evasion.[56] He was disqualified from running the club until 10 April 2015, and on 24 February 2015, Cellino announced he would not be returning to the club after his ban ended.[57]

On 30 October 2015, Cellino agreed a deal in principle with Leeds Fans Utd to sell a majority stake in the club.[58][59] When asked to legally commit to an exclusivity period to allow due diligence to commence, he reneged.[60]

Colours and badge

Leeds' first home colours
Leeds' home kit before changing to all white. 1934–1950


In Leeds' first fifteen years, the club kit was modelled on Huddersfield Town's blue and white striped shirts, white shorts and dark blue socks with blue and white rings on the turnovers,[61][62] because Huddersfield's chairman Hilton Crowther was attempting to merge the two clubs.[62] He eventually left Huddersfield to take over at Leeds.

In 1934, Leeds switched to blue and yellow halved shirts incorporating the city crest, white shorts and blue socks with yellow tops.[62] The kit was worn for the first time on 22 September 1934.[62] The club also adopted their first badge in 1934, using the city crest as Leeds City had. In 1950, Leeds switched to yellow shirts with blue sleeves and collars, white shorts and black, blue and gold hooped socks. In 1955, Leeds changed again to royal blue shirts with gold collars, white shorts, and blue and yellow hooped socks, thus echoing the original Leeds City strip.[62] In 1961, Don Revie introduced a plain white strip throughout, in the hope of emulating Spanish side Real Madrid.


Leeds United's badge in the late 1980s and '90s

A perching owl was added the strip in 1964 as the club's emblem. The design was a surprise, given Revie's superstition about the symbolism of birds. The owl came from the city crest, which itself was based on the crest of Sir John Saville, the first alderman of Leeds. In the late 1960s and early 1970s Leeds used the LUFC script found running down the centre of the current badge, however this was presented in a diagonal fashion rather than the current vertical. In 1973 came the embodiment of seventies imagery with the iconic LU smiley badge. Revie's predilection for gimmicks was years ahead of its time, and done with the explicit intention of gaining acceptance from a public outside West Yorkshire.[62]

In 1977 the smiley badge was reversed from yellow with blue smiley to blue with yellow smiley and the following year it was back to yellow but enclosed, in a circle with the words Leeds United AFC surrounding it. In 1978–79, a new badge was adorned which was similar to the previous season's smiley but had the design of a peacock. In 1984, another badge was introduced, lasting until 1998, making it the longest lived of the modern era. The rose and ball badge was distinctive, in the traditional blue, gold and white, incorporating the White Rose of York, together with the club's name. In the 1998–99 season, the current badge was officially adopted, with some modifications of the latter such as it again featured the White Rose of York and was blue, gold and white in colour, reading "LUFC" vertically down the centre.

Kit sponsors and manufacturers

Year Kit Manufacturer Main Shirt Sponsor Secondary Sponsor
1972–73 Umbro none  
1973–81 Admiral
1981–83 Umbro RFW
1983–84 Systime
1984–85 WKG
1985–86 Lion Cabinets
1986–89 Burton
1989–91 Top Man
1991–92 Evening Post
1992–93 Admiral Admiral
1993–96 Asics Thistle Hotels
1996–00 Puma Packard Bell
2000–03 Nike Strongbow
2003–04 Whyte & MacKay
2004–05 Diadora Rhodar
2005–06 Admiral
2006–07 Bet 24 Empire Direct
2007–08 Red Kite OHS
2008–11 Macron NetFlights.com
2011–14 Enterprise Insurance
2014–15 Help-Link
2015– Kappa none


Leeds United have only ever used one stadium as their home ground, Elland Road, where they have played since foundation in 1919. An all-seater football stadium situated in the Beeston, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. It is the 12th largest football stadium in England, and the second largest ground outside the Premier League. Elland Road was previously occupied by their predecessors, Leeds City before their disbanding.[63] After their formation, the council allowed them to rent the stadium until they could afford to buy it. With the exception of periods from the 1960s until 1983, and from 1997 to 2004, the council has owned the stadium.[64] However, it was sold by the club, in October 2004, with a 25-year sale-leaseback deal being agreed, with a commercial buy-back clause was also included for when the club's finances improve.

Initially the ground was the home of the Holbeck Rugby Club who played in the Northern Rugby Union, the forerunner of the Rugby Football League.[65] One of Leeds' first nicknames, 'The Peacocks', comes from the original name of Elland Road – 'The Old Peacock ground'. It was named by the original owners of the ground, Bentley's Brewery, after their pub 'The Old Peacock' which still faces the site.[66] Then, new formed Leeds City, agreed to rent and later own Elland Road. After their disbanding, it was sold to Leeds United. The most recent stand at Elland Road is the East or Family Stand, a cantilever structure completed during the 1992–93 season, and which can hold 17,000 seated spectators. It is a two tiered stand which continues around the corners, and is the largest part of the stadium. The Don Revie Stand was opened at the start of the 1994–95 season, and can hold just under 7,000 seated spectators.[specify] The roof of the West Stand holds a television commentary gantry and walkway for TV personnel. Elland Road was named in December 2009 as one of the contenders for the England 2018 World Cup bid, as a result of the bid Leeds have drawn up plans to re-develop parts of Elland Road and increase the capacity of the stadium. Ken Bates also revealed plans to take out the executive boxes out of the South Stand to increase the starting capacity by a further 2–3 thousand. More executive boxes would be built in the east stand.

Alex Ferguson has said that Elland Road has one of the most intimidating atmospheres in European football.[67]

A panorama of Elland Road


Peter Reid commented after being relieved of his managerial duties at Elland Road that "In 30 years I've never seen support like I did at the Arsenal game [at Elland Road] a couple of weeks ago. The fans at Leeds are fantastic."[68] Reid was also joined by two other previous managers on the eve of Leeds' first appearance in the third tier. Reid said that "the support is fantastic" and "incredible", Kevin Blackwell said "fans will follow them everywhere" and David O'Leary commented "There is an immense fan base and they are still with the club".[69]

The supporters are renowned for singing the signature song "Marching On Together" during matches. Other notable songs Leeds fans sing during games are "We Are The Champions, Champions Of Europe" (more commonly known as WACCOE) in reference to the 1975 European Cup Final which Leeds lost due to dubious refereeing decisions.

Leeds United fans also have a salute which is known as the 'Leeds Salute'[70] Leeds' are 10th in the all-time average attendance figures for the Football League and Premier League.[71] They have the third most rivalries in the English League[72] and were, allegedly, the most hated club in English football as of the start of the 2008–09 season.[73]


Leeds United have rivalries with several clubs, including Manchester United, Chelsea, Bradford City and Millwall. A rivalry with Turkish club Galatasaray was created after two Leeds fans were murdered by Galatasaray supporters before a UEFA Cup fixture in April 2000.[74] When former Leeds player Harry Kewell moved to Galatasaray in 2008, it caused uproar with Leeds supporters.[75][76][77]


Leeds United owned their own radio station, Yorkshire Radio, which broadcast on DAB Digital Radio and LUTV, before being closed in July 2013 by new owners GFH Capital, after outgoing President Ken Bates left the club.[78] LUTV is the club's own internet television channel, and is available to watch online via a subscription service.[79] It features a daily news programme, player and staff interviews, match highlights (of the first team, the Development squad and the Under 18s) and live commentary of all Leeds matches by Thom Kirwin and former player and manager Eddie Gray. Alternative commentary is broadcast on BBC Radio Leeds by Adam Pope and co commentator Noel Whelan.[80]

The club also published their own magazine 'Leeds, Leeds, Leeds', which was first produced in 1998. In recent years, the magazine was taken out of circulation in newsagents and supermarkets, and so was only available to official club members by mail or by purchase in the official club shop. The magazine ceased publication in 2011.

After the takeover by GFH Capital, Leeds introduced a Leeds United official Twitter feed to help interact via Social Media.[81] Since taking charge, GFH Capital also expanded the club's Facebook page and introduced Instagram accounts and further official Twitter pages for Commercial ventures. The club also re-branded and re-designed the official club website in August 2013 with an integrated LUTV facility within the website design.

In October 2014, it was revealed that Ken Bates owned radio station Radio Yorkshire would broadcast Leeds United games, thus sharing broadcasting rights with BBC Radio Leeds and LUTV for live matchday commentary of all Leeds United first team games.


In April 1972, the Leeds squad released a single, "Leeds United" with the B-side being "Leeds! Leeds! Leeds!" (commonly known as "Marching On Together"). It was issued to coincide with the team reaching the 1972 FA Cup Final; the vocals on the original recording were by the Leeds team. The record reached number 10 in the UK singles chart.[82] After Leeds' promotion back to the Championship in May 2010, the song was digitally re-mastered and re-released in an effort to get the song into the UK Singles Chart. By 4 pm on Monday, the song was already sitting 8th in the iTunes store charts and top of both the Amazon.com and Play.com singles charts. On the Official Chart Company's Official Chart Update the song charted at 10 (for the second time in its history) and was the highest new entry apart from B.o.B's Nothin' On You. Whilst it is not officially the club anthem, "Marching On Together" is played before every home game. Unlike many football songs that are just new words set to existing music, "Leeds Leeds Leeds" is an original composition by Les Reed and Barry Mason, purposely written for Leeds United.

For many years, Strings for Yasmin by Tin Tin Out was played before kick off at Elland Road; it was replaced in the 2008–09 season with Eye of the Tiger by Survivor and in the 2009–10 season with, Dance of the Knights, composed by Sergei Prokofiev. Nightmare by Brainbug is currently played before the start of the second half.


Current squad

Sam Byram has successfully graduated through the club's academy to make over 100 first-team appearances.
Yorkshire-born Alex Mowatt is another to have come through the club's academy to become a first-team regular and was Player of The Year for the 2014/15 Season.
Central Defender and Ivory Coast international Sol Bamba is captain and one of the key players at the club.
As of 12 December 2015.[83] [84]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Italy GK Marco Silvestri
2 England MF Sam Byram
3 Ivory Coast DF Sol Bamba (captain)
4 England DF Scott Wootton
5 Italy DF Giuseppe Bellusci
6 Scotland DF Liam Cooper (vice-captain)
7 Italy FW Mirco Antenucci
8 England MF Luke Murphy
9 New Zealand FW Chris Wood
10 England MF Alex Mowatt
11 Senegal FW Souleymane Doukara
14 Italy MF Tommaso Bianchi
15 Northern Ireland MF Stuart Dallas
No. Position Player
18 The Gambia MF Mustapha Carayol (on loan from Middlesbrough)
19 Scotland FW Lee Erwin
20 Democratic Republic of the Congo FW Jordan Botaka
21 England DF Charlie Taylor
22 England GK Ross Turnbull
23 England MF Lewis Cook
24 England MF Tom Adeyemi (on loan from Cardiff City)
26 Scotland MF Liam Bridcutt (on loan from Sunderland)
27 England MF Kalvin Phillips
28 Switzerland DF Gaetano Berardi
29 Denmark MF Casper Sloth
31 England DF Lewie Coyle
45 England GK Bailey Peacock-Farrell

Out on loan

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Northern Ireland FW Robbie McDaid (on loan at Lincoln City F.C. until May 2016)

Retired numbers

  • 17

On 15 May 2014, Leeds United retired the number 17 shirt due to superstitious reasons for owner Massimo Cellino. Up until June 2014, the last occupant of the shirt had been Michael Brown.[85]

Development squad and youth team

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Republic of Ireland GK Eric Grimes
England GK Will Huffer
England GK Theo Richardson
England DF Jake Croft
England DF Tyler Denton
England DF Matty Downing
England DF Tom Godden
England DF Ross Killock
Scotland DF Paul McKay
England DF Tom Pearce
England DF Jake Skelton
England DF Jovanni Sterling
England DF Jack Turnbull
England DF Jack Vann
Wales MF Chris Dawson
England MF Max Hill
No. Position Player
England MF Tom Lyman
England MF Alex Purver
England MF Henry Rollinson
England MF Mike Taylor
Portugal MF Ronaldo Vieira-Nan
England FW Tyla Bell
England FW Ryan Ferguson
England FW Lewis Knight
Scotland FW Jack McKay
Republic of Ireland FW Frank Mulhern
Kenya FW Clarke Oduor
England FW Luke Parkin
Republic of Ireland FW Eoghan Stokes
England FW Lewis Walters
England FW Mallik Wilks

Notable players

First Team coaching staff

Position Staff
Head Coach Scotland Steve Evans
Assistant Head Coach England Paul Raynor
Head of Recruitment Vacant
First Team Goalkeeper Coach England Richard Hartis
Head Physio England Steve Megson
Assistant Physio Republic of Ireland Henry McStay
Strength & Conditioning Coach England Sean Rush
Performance Analyst England Luke Foulkes
Kit Man England Chris Beasley
Assistant Kit Man England Richard Murray

Last updated: 05 January 2016
Source: Linkedin

Backroom staff

Club officials

Leeds United Football Club Limited ('LUFC') Owners Italy Eleonora Sport Ltd (81.58% shares)
UK Investments Company Limited (15.79%): Owned by Bahrain GFH Capital 100%
Leeds City Holdings Limited (2.63%) Owned by:
Italy Eleonora Sport Ltd (75% shares)
Bahrain GFH Capital & Investors (25% shares)
Patron Australia Patricia Lascelles, The Countess of Harewood
Chairman Italy Massimo Cellino
Executive Director Vacant
Director United States Daniel Arty
Director Italy Ercole Cellino
Director Italy Edoardo Cellino
Director Italy Giampaolo Caboni
Director Bahrain Jinesh Patel
Director Bahrain Salem Patel
Club Secretary England Stuart Hayton
Catering Director England Norbert Pichler
Ticket Services Manager England Katie Holmes-Lewis
IT Manager England Mark Broadley
Membership/Customer Services England Lorna Tinker
Financial Controller England Fay Greer

Last updated: 2 May 2013
Source: Leeds United Season Official Handbook 2012/13

Academy staff

Position Staff
Academy Director & Under 21s Manager England Paul Hart
Head of Coaching Wales Daral Pugh
Academy Manager England Adam Underwood
Development and Recruitment England Terry Potter
Senior Executive Officer England Alan Scorfield[86]
Under 18s Manager Scotland John Anderson
Under 18s Coach England Jason Blunt
Under 16s Coach Scotland Andy Gray
Under 16s and 15s Coach England Mark Jackson
Under 15s Coach England Dennis Oates
Under 13s Coach England Gary Hodgson
Under 11s Coach England Andy Wood
Under 10s Coach England Denis Metcalf
Under 9s Coach Luxembourg Scott Gardner
Under 9s Coach England Alan Parkes
Under 8s Coach England Paul Bray
Academy Goalkeeping Coach Scotland Neil Sullivan
Academy Lead Physio Vacant
Academy Assistant Physio England Faith Fisher-Atack
Lead Sports Scientist England Stacey Emmonds
Lead Academy Strength and Conditioning Coach England Tom Robinson
Academy Strength and Conditioning Coach England Rob Etherington
Academy Kit Man England Shaun Ford

Last updated: 30 August 2015
Source: Leeds United Official Website – About The Academy [87]

Other staff

Position Staff
Marketing And Commercial Partnerships Manager England Katy Barton
Commercial Sales Executive England Charlotte Taylor
Health & Safety Manager England Vince Merriman
Commercial Assistant England Matt Diamond
Player Liaison Officer England Peter 'Stix' Lockwood
Supporters Liaison Officer England Laura Bland
Business & Community Liaison Director England Debra Ware
Head Groundsman England Norman Southernwood
Elland Road Tour Guide Northern Ireland John McClelland[88]
LUTV Commentator England Thom Kirwin[80]
LUTV Co-Commentator Scotland Eddie Gray[80]
Media England Ryan Parrish
Pitch Announcer England Rich Williams
Mascot England Lucas The Kop Cat

Last updated: 6 April 2014
Source: Leeds United A.F.C. 2013/14 Season Official Handbook

League history


Club honours


English Leagues

English Cups

European competition

Personnel honours

English Football Hall of Fame

The following have either played for or managed Leeds and have been inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame :



Scottish Football Hall of Fame

The following have either played for or managed Leeds and have been inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame :



Welsh Sports Hall of Fame

The following have played for Leeds and have been inducted into the Welsh Sports Hall of Fame :


European Hall of Fame

The following have played for Leeds and have been inducted into the European Hall of Fame :



Football League 100 Legends

The following have played for Leeds and were included in the Football League 100 Legends :

FWA Player of the Year

The following have won the Football Writers' Association Footballer of the Year award whilst playing for Leeds :

PFA Players' Player of the Year

The following have won the PFA Players' Player of the Year award whilst playing for Leeds :

PFA Young Player of the Year

The following have won the PFA Young Player of the Year award whilst playing for Leeds :

PFA Team of the Year

The following have been included in the PFA Team of the Year whilst playing for Leeds :

Football League awards

The following have won the Football League's Player of the Year whilst playing for Leeds :

The following have won the Football League's Young Player of the Year whilst playing for Leeds :

The following have won the Football League's Football League Championship Apprentice of the Year whilst playing for Leeds :

Goal of the season

The following have won the Goal of the Season award whilst playing for Leeds :

Premier League Golden Boot

The following have won the Golden Boot award whilst playing for Leeds :

In popular culture

  • The Damned Utd – A fictional best-selling novel by David Peace based on Brian Clough's tenure as manager of Leeds United.
  • The Damned United – A 2009 film based on the above novel.
  • The Penalty King – A 2006 film about a Leeds United fan who goes blind after an accident and uses the Legend of Billy Bremner as inspiration to take up Football again.
  • Leeds United – A Song by Amanda Palmer.
  • Paint It White: Following Leeds Everywhere and Leeds United: The Second Coat – Bestselling books by Gary Edwards, a man who has missed only one game, including friendlies, since he started watching Leeds United in 1968.
  • English: Own Goal – A BBC Schools Drama set in and around Elland Road based around a group of children who tackle criminals forging fake shirts and tickets.[90]
  • Since the club's dramatic demise in the 2000s, the phrase "doing a Leeds" has entered English football terminology to refer to the potential pitfalls faced by any club due to over-spending or failing to qualify for the UEFA Champion's league.[91][92][93][94]

See also


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External links