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20 Oct 2014 09:17am, by Shields53

We all know how modern football is run, rich men using football clubs as their play things. Whilst the average fan may place a long odds accumulator for their thrills and spills the millionaires and billionaires of today buy football clubs. They gamble their fortunes on success and silverware. Massimo Cellino is no different, Leeds are his play thing, his chance at honours and fame. So why, if really he is just the same as all these other billionaire foreign owners has he attracted so much attention?

Former Leeds players, ex professionals, pundits and journalists have all had their say on Cellino but what is it about him that gains so much attention? Are his methods so different? Let’s get one thing out of the way to begin with, he’s a bit dodgy. There is no denying that, there are so many other dodgy owners of football clubs it hardly seems worth mentioning, so let’s not even take that into consideration. That debate has been done and will continue to be done elsewhere.

Cellino’s style is based around a more continental structure, with Nicola Salerno acting as sporting director scouting and signing the players and a head coach managing the team on a day to day basis, training and tactics etc. Some would say though that Cellino’s system is more autocratic, that he meddles in every detail, no matter how big or small from top to bottom. And this seems to be the issue that people take.

Ex player Ian Harte was critical of Cellino in Bournemouth’s matchday programme ahead of our game. He bemoaned Cellino’s appointment of Hockday as feeling like he was just a puppet on a string, criticised his lack of investment in the squad and the way he had implemented redundancies at the club. Redundancies are always a difficult one, especially regarding loyal employees but Cellino has made a significant investment purchasing Leeds and to that extent he needs to do what is required to put the club on an even keel.

Players who have left Elland Road more recently have also been critical of Cellino’s ways with Ross McCormack and Lee Peltier firing parting shots as the new owner. Their new clubs relative positions in the table, Fulham 22nd and Huddersfield 18th, show that the grass is not always greener on the other side and that there is some merit to Cellino’s methods after all. Academy manager Neil Redfearn has recently said the new management style can work and it’s looking hard to argue against. A system where promising young English talent is brought through the academy to play with young European imports seems to be working out ok.

Perhaps those in the footballing establishment who hit out at Cellino are just afraid of what his methods mean. In a time when footballers wages are astronomical and transfer fees sky high Cellino has invested well and bought some quality players for comparably little money. I have no doubt if similarly valued English players were available he would have gone for them but the fact is the fees for English players are inflated. Cellinos system proves you do not have to spend millions or pay players and managers millions to put together a decent squad. Perhaps those who are so critical are just looking after the status quo?

Darko Milanic may not be setting the world on fire so far, still searching for his first win but the players brought in have shown me enough to suggest that they can achieve playing the right system and formation. After all under Redders we got the results. I think Cellinos ways of working can bring us success, we just need that final piece of the jigsaw.

19 Oct 2014 03:11pm, by Shields53

Rotherham 2 (Revell 58, Clarke-Harris 65)
Leeds United 1 (Antenucci 30)

A poor second half performance at Ney York stadium on Friday night left Darko Milanic still searching for his first victory as Leeds United manager.

Lewis Cook came back into the starting line-up and Stephen Warnock returned after his mystery disappearance replacing Sloth and Byram. Leeds had gone ahead on the half hour mark when Souleymane Doukara played a lovely through ball which Antenucci latched onto and dispatched past Adam Collin to put the Whites one up.

Leeds had dominated possession in the first half but were unable to convert that into a bigger lead, the second half was a different matter however and whilst Rotherham rallied, Leeds were poor. Just before the hour Silvestri could only punch clear a Lee Frecklington shot, the rebound fell to Revell who made no mistake levelling the scores. With 15 minutes to go a Leeds move was broken down on the half way line. Jonson Clarke-Harris picked up the ball and ran forward unopposed before unleashing a shot from 30 yards out and sealing the points for Rotherham.

Manager Darko Milanic said after the game “We were playing well and controlled the game. We scored the goal we had some good counter-attacks, but in the last few minutes of the first half they began with long balls and crosses from all areas. They made a lot of pressure and although we were prepared for it in the second half we made two mistakes and they scored.” Here are the views of some of our members;

The views of drsdadsotherson;

Some nice play until we went behind, then we just seemed to lose it completely. Despite the nice play I think I counted just 4 shots on target. The fact that this is an improvement on recent performances is even more worrying. Maybe we should focus more on what we are capable of playing and less on what the coach would like to see?
Adryan could well be worth every bit of the hype he came to us with. I'd like to see him get a start soon and see what he can do over 90 mins.

On a side note, since when was grabbing a player by the shoulder and wrenching him backwards to the floor not a bookable offence, yet pushing a player away with a ball is? You see keepers shoving players away from a goal kick every match, so why was it a booking for Silvestri?

The views of Gurj;

So frustrated after that non show in the second half! We had control of the game and yet just didnt come out the changing rooms after the break ?!

Thing that got me, we kept possession so well before we scored, overplayed if anything, with too many side ways passes in our half but when it was time to actually do that in the second half we didnt do it? I'm sure I speak for all LUFC fans when saying, I was so confident at half time that we would go on and win it and so to actually lose is just a total sickener.

On the positive side, and have to say credit where it's due, Adryan did live up to the hype after coming on. I was a doubter but here definitely gave us a much needed spark. ThepProblem is how do we get him, Mowatt and Lewis Cook (Who I thought was superb in the first half ) into te same team? Only way I can see how Adryan can fit in, is if Doukara is dropped and so we play the Brazilian off Attenuci. Only issue then is we start to look very lightweight in the middle.

Norwich away next, cant say I'm expecting much there...

The views of theleedsmango;

Our main issue is not being able to sustain 90minutes of consistent football. We alternate between having good 1st or 2nd halves. Is that a motivational issue? Probably.

It was a good game of football, for once we were the team trying to pass it around and the other team was relying on crosses and hoof ball. When we had that system, how many teams did we nick points off? It's always going to happen, especially when 80% of the teams will be upping their games to beat Leeds. But if Antenucci scores that cross from Mowatt in the first half, or Austin gets one of his long distant shots on target, and we'd have been 2-0 up; probably a completely different second half.

Mowatt, Cook, Adryan and Austin were all taking people on with great success... we haven't been taking people on like that since the Gradel days. Austin lacks the intelligence to know when to pass, when to shoot etc. but those sort of runs will pay off. Bianchi had a bit of a nightmare today and I would have subbed him off before Cook. I've said it before but Cook controls games in a way far beyond his years. He proved today that he is dangerous when running with the ball. Sad to say but we are not going to hold on to that talent for long.

Silvestri was solid except for the first goal. He parried the ball into the box (which would have seen Kenny get absolutely slaughtered). Nothing he could do for the second goal, brilliant swerve on the ball. The defenders should have closed the player down in what is commonly referred to as "don't let him shoot!". Now that Bellusci has mellowed a bit he looks even more like a great defender. Bar injuries or rest, Cooper and Del Fabro are going to struggle to get a chance to prove themselves.

Doukara struggled yesterday and hasn't hit the form he showed at the start of the season. He did play the through ball that led to the goal, however, so I guess he wasn't entirely useless. Antenucci is going to fall offside more often than not when he plays on the shoulder of defenders but if he can score like that on the rare times he is on side then it's a decent strategy. My fear is we are limited to throughballs to Antenucci and long shots from outside the box. We need to work on other attacking options.

Finally Adryan. Would have loved to see him get a goal because he answers the above dilemma. He was making chances from nothing. Getting beat in a local derby didn't seem like the ideal time to debut a Brazilian youngster but he shrugged the pressure off and played very well. I think we should play him behind a lone striker, possible in a 4-2-3-1 formation.

Join the debate and discuss you views on the Rotherham game on the forums.

Rotherham Line-up
Collin, Skarz, Arnason, Hall (Taylor 45), Frecklington, Revell, Green, Richardson, Pringle (Smallwood 80), Morgan, Derbyshire (Clarke-Harris 62)
Unused Subs: Loach, Broadfoot, Bowery, Swift

Leeds United Line-up
Silvestri, Berardi, Pearce, Bellusci, Warnock, Austin, Bianchi (Morison 88), Mowatt, Cook (Adryan 62), Antenucci, Doukara (Sharp 76)
Unused Subs: S Taylor, Byram, Cooper, Sloth

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