With all the takeover talk bounding around Elland Road these days it may well have gone unnoticed that Neil Warnock’s Leeds have steadily been building momentum over the last few weeks.
After a reasonable, though not explosive, start, most of us stood staring blankly at the squad list with more than just a twinge of pessimism. Nobody doubted that the players Warnock had brought in would be more than up for the fight, but we appeared to have an alarming lack of depth, and quality, in almost every area on the pitch.
With that in mind, nobody expected much. Mid table by Christmas, at best.
What we weren’t expecting, even if we knew it was a possibility, was the way in which Warnock would galvanize the threadbare squad that he did have into becoming a serious threat in the division. Over the last three games Leeds have seriously got into gear, with impressive individual and team performances throughout.
After the win against Bristol City I thought to myself – this is it, we’re finally watching real Neil Warnock performances. The kind of performance where you see players throwing themselves at every ball, playing for their team mates, for their manager, and perhaps more importantly, playing with the personal pride and passion that is expected by anyone pulling on the white shirt.
Prior to our win over Nottingham Forest we hadn’t really got going, but over the last few weeks something has clicked. Before it, I couldn’t see us making a go of the season without the investment from the proposed takeover arriving quickly, but now I see the bigger picture. Warnock has repeated all along that until anything is announced he will carry on as if it isn’t happening, and you can see that he truly believes that he can get his current side promoted with or without new owners.
That has to be good news for Leeds. Neil Warnock is no rookie, he’s experienced enough now to know whether he’s chasing a lost cause or not and you can see the energy he’s got for the job, he practically burst with pride after every goal. The man knows what it takes to get promotion and he can see it happening with Leeds. In his mind, he’s focused on the roar at full time when he finally seals our return to the Premier League.
The players confidence is growing day by day, they’ve had a battle mentality installed and you can see that they fear nobody. Against Everton, a team full of Premier League players, they didn’t sit back and look to counter, they took the game straight to them from the word go and never looked back. Every ball got chased down and scrapped for, by players that seemed almost possessed.
So here we are now, with games coming thick and fast and a team that are proving themselves to be more than up for the fight. The squad does still need additions, but you try telling the current team that they aren’t good enough for promotion.
This team really do have what it takes, because Warnock has made them so. For the first time in a long time we’re supporting a team that wants this as much as we do and a manager that will stop at nothing to make sure we get back to where we want to be.
Leeds are finally on their way back, marching on again, together.