Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughClosing a window the Leeds way - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough Closing a window the Leeds way - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

Closing a window the Leeds way

Never really a dull moment at Leeds is there? It’s like if Steven Spielberg had directing duty for a football club, there is always a guarantee to be something happening in the darkest corners of Elland Road. It’s rather fun for the neutral, players in, players out, Ken Bates orchestrating it all against a backdrop of one of the biggest fan-bases in the country. Of course, I can imagine, it must equal hell for them.

So what’s happening now? Well, the tale goes that academy product and club captain Johnny Howson has all but left for Norwich, while Robert Snodgrass could also have joined Howson on the long journey down to East Anglia as the Canaries were trying to take advantage of rumoured unsettlement over the Scot’s contract in order to take him on their refreshing Premier League journey.

As it were, Grayson declined the offer from Lambert in the summer and offered his player a new contract, whereas ensuing negotiations around the dinner table over custard creams and blackcurrant cordial have been painstakingly slow, rumours stormed around Elland Road during their 3-1 win over Ipswich on Saturday that Snodgrass had indeed grown bored of negotiating and had ripped any potential new deal up to feed his dog, if he has one.

These were all rubbished by Grayson so Snodgrass, who took his tally to ten or the season in that win over Ipswich, remains a contented Leeds player with another 18 months left on his contract. So what else is going on as the January window draws to a close?

Well, they have replaced a home-grown talent and captain who played for Leeds over 200 times, with another home-grown talent who will be there for a month in Fabian Delph, his loan being the unique Bates way of papering over the cracks after Howson’s passing.

Also, in his program notes for the date with Ipswich, the Leeds chairman had nothing but short-shrift for dissenting voices bemoaning his lack of spending, “a vociferous few wonder where the money has gone” wrote a scathing Bates, “well I’ll tell them, Grayson’s budget was £9.5 million and we have spent £11.72 million, over budget by nearly 23 percent”.

Another loanee was added earlier in the window in Andros Townsend while Danny Pugh’s switch from Stoke was made permanent for £500,000 but more money could be spent in the form of Leicester City’s Richie Wellens, who Grayson worked with at Blackpool. Wellens, who impressed in Leicester’s Monday night win over Southampton, is a cultured central midfield influence and there are worse potential replacements for Grayson to blow the Howson money on than the 31-year-old.

Grayson is believed to have Wellens right at the top of his shopping list and Leicester maybe temped to sell after the emergence of young Danny Drinkwater. The United manager has meanwhile promised “2 exciting signings” before the window closes next Tuesday. It’s all exciting stuff, but with Leeds, you never get anything different.