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O'Leary leaves

666 Views 37 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  Carson35
this news really shocked me, and i can only assume it's as a result of ferdinand going to man utd, but we'll wait and see.

Leeds United have announced that manager David O'Leary has left the Premiership club by mutual consent.

The former Arsenal and Republic of Ireland defender joined the club four years ago and had spent millions in search of success.

But today the Elland Road club shocked British football by announcing that O'Leary and the club have parted company.

The club published a statement today on chairman Peter Ridsdale's behalf, which read: "Leeds United PLC today announces that David O'Leary, manager of Leeds United Football Club has left the company by mutual consent.

Mutual benefit

"After four successful years the pressures of some of the off-field incidents have resulted in both the company and Mr O'Leary agreeing that it would be of mutual benefit for a change of manager.

"It is hoped that an announcement regarding a successor can be announced in the next few weeks.

The club's financial troubles have been well publicised of late
"Leeds United would like to place on record its thanks for David's enormous contribution over the last four years.''

The news follows O'Leary's insistence that he wanted to keep star defender Rio Ferdinand despite a brilliant World Cup which has seen Manchester United repeatedly linked with a 30m-plus move for the former West Ham man.

The club's financial troubles have been well publicised of late with Ridsdale revealing that O'Leary must make a 15m profit on summer deals following O'Leary's failure to take the Yorkshire club into the Champions League last season.

Ferdinand, however, is not the only name that has been linked with a move from Elland Road.


Lee Bowyer, Danny Mills, Mark Viduka, Harry Kewell, Robbie Keane and Olivier Dacourt have also been the subject of speculation linking them with moves elsewhere.

Despite their failure to qualify for the Champions League, the fans were fully behind O'Leary, who was rated one of the best young managers in the country.

And the fans are bound to agree with O'Leary's stance on Ferdinand's future.

O'Leary felt that selling Ferdinand to Manchester United would be akin to handing the title to their arch rivals.

Leeds fans were dismayed when Howard Wilkinson sold Eric Cantona to Manchester United in the summer of 1991, a move which proved the catalyst for some long awaited success at Old Trafford.

If Ferdinand follows the same path as Cantona it is bound to spark outrage among the fans.

-courtesy of www.itv-football.co.uk
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Well, I am a very shocked young man atm. David O'Leary has finally left Leeds. I didn't think it would happen so soon, it was the last thing I expected right after the World Cup. He has done alright but no silverwear. :dontcare: Why the shock move? David O'Leary leaving isn't something any of us were contemplating, were we? I guess he had to move on sooner or later and I know find myself asking the ultimate question? Who will take over as the Manager of Leeds? Eddie Grey? Brian Kidd?
Yeah I just heard this then. Feckin incredible that one :dazed:
Just heard the news...I think Leeds have made a big mistake here, he was doing a very good lob considering the circumstances. I am sure that they won't be able to get a better manager to replace him, also now signed them. I really can't understand why they sacked him, if they did sack him of course.
Good job??????

100+ Million spent
0 Trophies
Constantly slating players
Bringing out books with dodgy titles at even worse times
managed to finish just 6th
9 players stating there discontent and wanting to leave
0 Trophies (worth repeating)

I'd say he's done an average job.
CardiffRed said:
Good job??????

100+ Million spent
0 Trophies
Constantly slating players
Bringing out books with dodgy titles at even worse times
managed to finish just 6th
9 players stating there discontent and wanting to leave
0 Trophies (worth repeating)

I'd say he's done an average job.
Yup ... Built a straw dynasty ...

Take out that Champions League semi-final run a few years back and just what have Leeds done???

Hype with a capital H.

I've just seen the news and I am stunned.:eekani:
I just hope that Leeds have got a good replacement in mind.
Just a few names I can think of:
Eddie Gray,
Gus Hiddink,
Martin O'Neal,
Can't think of anymore off the top of my head,but I'm sure many more names will be mentioned.:confused:
I've been listening to the radio and they mentioned a lot of possible replacements, these are the ones I can remember:

Mick McCarthy
Brian Kidd
Alan Curbishley
Peter Taylor
Gus Hidiink
Gary McCallister
Martin O'Neill
Steve McClaren
Terry Venables
Ruud Gullit
Gianluca Vialli
Gary Megson
Gordon Strachan

Personally I think they should go for either Terry Venables or Steve McClaren, if they can get either of them.
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Like everyone else - Shocked about the news.

One thing that DOL never learned as a Manager was when Leeds were going through a bad run, DOL never change players out of form or didn't do anything different, therefore, Leeds bad run would last for months and it cost Leeds the EPL.

However, it now time to move On.

I would strongly urge Leeds to get on the following 2 men to
lead Leeds into a more dominant force in the EPL and Europe.

Terry Venables or Martin O'Neil - NO OTHERS will do the job as well as these Guys.

Both are Legends - Leeds will be a better attacking force and results will come with there Managerial style.
Wow. I feel sorry for him, although I knew that it would come, just a season or two later. And he knows who will be coming in as well. Well, I don't think it is Guus Hiddink, nor Vialli, Gullit, and definitely not Mick McCarthy. Venables seems likely. McClaren and O'Neill would be good, but I think they both want to stay with their respective clubs. What if it is George Graham?? :rolleyes:
Martin O'Neill Is Early Favourite For Leeds Job
News Archive

Would O'Neill leave Celtic for Leeds? (Allsport)
06/27/2002. Glasgow Celtic boss Martin O'Neill has emerged as the early favourite to take the now vacant managerial position at Leeds United.

Following today's sacking of David O'Leary, O'Neill is one of a number of names being touted around to take over, and indeed was wanted by Leeds following the departure of George Graham back in 1998, however his then club Leicester refused the Yorkshire side permission to speak to O'Neill and he remained at Filbert Street.

Other notable names are Ireland's World Cup boss Mick McCarthy, himself a native Yorkshireman, as well as Premiership bosses Alan Curbishley of Charlton, and former Leeds midfielder Gordon Strachan, now in charge at Southampton.

Full list from Ladbrokes.

Martin O'Neill (Celtic) 5/4
Mick McCarthy (Ireland) 9/4
Alan Curbishley (Charlton), George Burley (Ipswich) 10/1
Gordon Strachan (Southampton) 11/1
Eddie Gray (Leeds backroom staff) 13/1

Other more unlikely bets include former bosses George Graham, who left for Spurs four years ago, and Howard Wilkinson, the man who won the 2nd and 1st division titles for Leeds in the 90s. Both are quoted at 67/1

soccerage ;)
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Disappointed O'Leary Knows The Next Leeds Boss
News Archive

O'Leary is naturally disappointed (Allsport)
06/27/2002. Sacked Leeds United boss David O'Leary claims that he was given no prior warning to today's shock events, but believes that he knows the identity of the man who will take his job.

The Irishman says that he was dismissed as he turned up for work today ?his final day before taking a holiday ?but feels that although he was in the dark, the decision was made a while ago.

He told Sky Sports News, "I went in (to the club) thinking I've got my holiday during which to organise things for next season and the chairman told me 'you've got the sack' - simple as that. He said nothing else, just that."

He added, "I think I know who has got the job. It's already in place. I'm disappointed, but that's football. I've tried to do the best I can to run the club and I've had great support."

soccerage ;)
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SA Editorial: David O'Leary - Success Story Or Glorious Failure?
News Archive

Goodbye David, but will Leeds be better off without him? (Allsport)
06/27/2002. As a Leeds United fan for over a quarter of a century, today's news that manager David O'Leary had left the club left me absolutely shell-shocked.

Just two days ago, I let out an audible cheer when the genial Irishman announced that Rio Ferdinand would not be sold to Manchester United and that he would effectively do everything in his power to keep him at Leeds. This was exactly what I, and Leeds fans everywhere, wanted to hear. If players have to be sold, then fine, but not one of our biggest assets to one of our biggest rivals.

I was thrilled to hear this from the Leeds manager himself. It was as though he was `one of us` - a fan, a supporter, someone who really cares for his football club and not just there to increase his bank balance.

Then came today's sledgehammer news ?a rare member of the JFK syndrome in that I'll probably never forget where I was and what I was doing when I heard.

So why, less than two hours later, am I sat here with the shock wearing off by the minute and the disappointment factor going with it?

I'm wondering whether this will now be a blessing in disguise after 120 minutes of believing that we were heading for the dark old days of the 1980's again, when away trips to Rotherham and Shrewsbury were regular occurrences and home crowds were a fraction of the 35,000+ attracted at Elland Road this season.

You see, whilst there's absolutely no denying that David O'Leary has been a good thing for Leeds United Football Club, there is a school of thought that he reached his peak in 2000-01 and could no longer take the club any higher. So was the Irishman a success at Elland Road?

When he took over after George Graham acrimonious departure in October 1998, Leeds were, for the most part, mundane. Mid-table, drab, defensive and looking as likely to win silverware, as Saudi Arabia were to win the World Cup. Things had turned in that final season, with a fifth place finish and a new striker under the guise of Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, but overall, Graham's time at Leeds is rarely looked back on with any delight.

O'Leary came in and gave the kids a chance. Unknowns like Alan Smith, Stephen McPhail, Jon Woodgate and Matt Jones were given a chance and for the most part took it gratefully. Leeds played with a fearless streak, which catapulted the side into a finishing position of fourth.

A year later, a position higher, a UEFA Cup semi-final albeit shrouded in tragedy and a place in the Champions League and suddenly everything was looking very rosy for the future indeed.

During 2000-01, money was splashed big time on Rio Ferdinand, as Leeds became everyone's `other team` thanks to a stupendously exciting European campaign, which took the club to within 90 minutes of a Champions League final. It was a wonderful season, never to be forgotten at the club. Victories against Milan, Lazio and Anderlecht were the highlights as Leeds took on the cream of Europe.

However, with the benefit of hindsight, this was the high point. Failure to qualify for the CL the next season hit hard, both among the fans and financially at the club and underlying all the thrills and spills was the realisation that despite all the plaudits and `oh so nears`, Leeds were still looking at an empty silverware cabinet.

Last season was another step down the slippery slope as CL qualification was again beyond the side and after the humiliation of an FA Cup defeat at Cardiff, came elimination from Europe at home to PSV. Maybe the writing was on the wall back then, who knows?

I guess it depends how you want to measure `success`. Many clubs would love to be in Leeds' position. Top six in the Premiership and in the UEFA Cup next season is a dream for 95% of teams and a lot of this is down to O'Leary, indeed he has shown that he can, and has, done even better. As far as his time in charge is concerned, it will be looked back upon with a lot more joy than the Graham era, and in the all-time list of Leeds managers, only Don Revie and Howard Wilkinson are likely to be above O'Leary.

But if you judge a man and his abilities on medal and trophies, then O'Leary will be judged as a failure ?and this is a shame. Maybe he is too nice and simply not cut out to be the boss of a top class side. Maybe the luck, or roll-of-the-dice, deserted him when he most needed it. Maybe he could take Leeds no further.

Doubtless the real reason for the split will be revealed sooner or later and whilst I am still a little sad on seeing the back of O'Leary, I look back at the last few months of 2001-2 season and find myself wondering exactly where the club was going.

I hope in hindsight that the departure occurred at the right time rather than allow the slump to continue, but only time will tell.

In the meantime, good luck in the future to David O'Leary ?and thanks for some unbelievable memories.

Gary Dowden (soccerage ;) )
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You're going over the top a bit there with the postings Carson.... :irritate:
Yeah, we get the point... :lazy: Can we all get a picture of McCarthy in the position into our heads. It may seem far off but I think he would be an awsome replacement, just look at how well he did at the World Cup! :)
o'neill would be the obvious choice and the english press seems to think it's already a done deal today. he has great discipline and man-management which IMO o'leary seriously lacked. the club needs someone to take control and after o'neill the next best disciplinarian is o'neill.

i think that the board were justified in sacking o'leary. his success:)o ) didn't really reflect the money he spent. the total money spent was £93,460,000 with a a recoup on transfers of just £24,745,000. that's a deficit of -£64,715,000. taking this into account his achievements were remarkably limited. the new manager will have time to change things around before the next season and make a couple of decent signings.
O'Leary To Remain Quiet Over Leeds Departure
News Archive

Silent - for now (Allsport)
06/28/2002. Sacked Leeds United boss David O'Leary has vowed to keep silent over his departure from Elland Road, unless the club put an incorrect angle on matters.

O'Leary was ousted yesterday in a shock move after almost four years at the club, however he is not going to reveal any massive details about the split unless he has to.

He told Sky Sports News, "My pride's been hurt, I've been given the sack and that's all I'd like to say on the matter. I tried not to let the fans down. They have a great spin doctor at the club, and I'm sure we'll see plenty of spin there. But I'll try and hold my head up. I've tried to do my best."

"People can throw at you that you've spent ?0million, well I have. But I think I've taken the club a long way in those four years, tried to raise the profile. The ?0m is good profit, they can cash in on that any time they want to. I don't think I've squandered the money for them. The only thing that concerns me is the spin that's put on it. I got the sack, and I know the reason. As long as those reasons stay as they should be, fine, but if I see spin of another sort to suit people, then I'll have plenty to say."

soccerage ;)
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Leeds Warded Off McClaren By Middlesbrough
News Archive

McClaren has not been talking with Leeds (Allsport)
06/29/2002. Leeds United have been told to forget any plans to entice Middlesbrough boss Steve McClaren to Elland Road.

Media reports suggested that McClaren was on the Leeds wanted list to take over from sacked manager David O'Leary, however Boro are having none of it.

Chief executive Keith Lamb said, "The manager and his staff have no time to be taking any notice of speculation. He's working hard and busily making plans for the new season with Middlesbrough."

soccerage ;)
Saturday, June 29, 2002
Sunday summit talks for Leeds plc
By Peter Ferguson

Leeds United's plc board will meet tomorrow to decide who they want to succeed the sacked David O'Leary as manager at Elland Road.

McCarthy: Ireland boss is Elland Road probable
Peter Ridsdale's dream of gate-crashing the domestic and European elite, underwritten by a massive £100million investment in players, depends on Leeds landing the right successor.

Mick McCarthy is their favoured candidate. But the gifted son of Barnsley, who took the Republic of Ireland to the last 16 of the World Cup, will not be easy to prise away from an international post where he has achieved hero status.

The former Manchester City centre-half was yesterday putting the finishing touches to the World Cup diary that will be an instant bestseller beyond Dublin thanks to his epic Far East row with Roy Keane.

McCarthy, who is scheduled for a family holiday in Portugal next week, is thought to have a clause in his two-year contract for the European Championship campaign that allows him to speak to interested Premiership clubs.

Leeds will certainly exploit that after conceding that their other prime candidate - Celtic boss Martin O'Neill - would be as tantalisingly out of reach to Ridsdale's overtures this time as he was four years ago at Leicester.

With success at club rather than international level, O'Neill would have been Leeds' No.1 choice but he is set on another season in charge at Celtic Park.

Rangers' improved challenge for the Scottish title will be a battle the loyal O'Neill relishes, as well as a further chance of Champions League progress that would make an impression on the Old Trafford powerbrokers.

O'Neill, who has turned down chances to manage Leeds and Everton, left Celtic fans to worry yesterday as he flew out to Japan for television duty at tomorrow's World Cup Final.

But a Celtic spokesman insisted: 'The manager has consistently said he has a three-year contract that he fully intends to honour. That deal still has a year to run.'

Middlesbrough manager Steve McClaren could be the outside candidate, but Leeds will not jeopardise their ties with PSV by attempting to hijack Guus Hiddink's move to Eindhoven.

Meanwhile O'Leary, who twice ignored warnings from his board to curb his public criticisms of the club, could be handed the chance to resurrect his managerial career in Italy.

His reputation was enhanced there by Champions League victories over Lazio and AC Milan two seasons ago.

The sacked boss went on holiday to Sardinia yesterday and has never hidden his admiration for Italy or its football, citing Roma's Fabio Capello as a favourite coach. Once linked with Inter Milan, O'Leary is also highly regarded at Lazio and was sounded out as a possible successor to Sven Goran Eriksson.

He said: 'I hope somebody takes pity on me and I get the chance to do the best for them and their fans. I loved this job. It was mentally tough for the last two years but it is a great club.'

Ridsdale decided that change was needed after a dismal defeat by Fulham in April. It took until last weekend for the plc board to reach the same conclusion.

The chairman said last night: 'We must appoint a manager who will lead the team to some silverware and regular Champions League football.'


Saturday, June 29, 2002
O'Neill remains Elland Road target
By Roddy Thomson

Leeds turned up the heat in their chase for Martin O'Neill last night as the Celtic manager cancelled his flight to Japan for the World Cup Final, fuelling speculation that he has stayed behind to sort out his future.
The Irishman remains top of Peter Ridsdale's wish-list to replace David O'Leary and the Leeds plc chairman hopes O'Neill will signal that all the other candidates can be discarded when the Elland Road directors convene tomorrow to watch the big match on TV.

It is understood that Leeds' pursuit will be determined and aggressive, with Ridsdale unwilling to be thwarted in his quest, as he was four years ago when the Yorkshire club first approached O'Neill to take over.

Ridsdale said last night: 'The board is putting together a list of names and I have arranged a meeting over the weekend. Once we have set out our target then I will start immediately to try to get him.

'We must appoint a manager who can build on recent success and take us to the next level, who will lead the team to some silverware and regular Champions League football.'

It is known that when O'Neill was at Leicester, he was only free to talk to Celtic because his contract contained a clause permitting direct approaches from alternative employers during the month of June. A similar clause in O'Neill's Celtic contract would enable Leeds to talk to their target before Monday.

O'Neill would be a very popular appointment with the Elland Road fans. In a daytime poll on the Yorkshire club's official website, he scored almost 60 per cent of the votes, World Cup success stories Guus Hiddink and Mick McCarthy both lagging way behind.

Parkhead chiefs declined to comment further on the day's developments, or rather lack of them. And, with pre-season training starting on Tuesday, they still fully expect O'Neill to be at the club to begin the final year of his existing contract.

Indications from the club's inner circle point to O'Neill 'running down his present deal' rather than actively seeking an early release, although the feeling persists that he will use the uncertainty to persuade the club's power-brokers to release more money for squad strengthening purposes.

That leaves Brian Quinn and his Celtic plc board with a weekend of soul-searching - and doubtless also some financial juggling - to try to ensure O'Neill stays put.

McCarthy, meanwhile, spent yesterday in Yorkshire putting the finishing touches to his World Cup memoirs. He will jet off to Portugal this weekend for a long-overdue family holiday - with key sources in Dublin saying yesterday they are resigned to losing their man. Hiddink is already ring-fenced by PSV Eindhoven, with Middlesbrough's Steve McClaren the new outsider. O'Neill's typical silence, nonetheless, is leaving his legion of Celtic fans feeling distinctly jittery.

The alternative prospect of his succeeding Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United remains fixed on the horizon - and on the lips of the majority of senior bookmaking executives.

The situation leaves Quinn and Dermot Desmond once again desperately seeking funds for Champions League signings to tempt O'Neill away from Premiership riches.

Rangers manager Alex McLeish, for one, insists Celtic's leaders will do everything to keep their man. 'I'm sure that Celtic will fight tooth and nail to keep him if it turns into anything more than speculation,' McLeish said yesterday.

Rangers are set to play Leeds in a pre-season friendly at the beginning of August - but McLeish is refusing to contemplate locking horns with O'Neill again quite that soon. 'We'll wait and see if that happens but, at the moment, it's all pie in the sky,' he added.

soccernet ;)
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