Luke Murphy looked forward to happier times with Leeds United after his first goals since the opening day of the season rounded off a momentous week at Elland Road.
The midfielder scored twice to earn a 2-0 win over Blackpool and then welcomed a takeover by Massimo Cellino which he expects to quell “uncertainty” at Leeds and cure “agitation amongst the fans.”
Cellino took in his first home match as United’s owner on Saturday, five days after completing his 75 per cent buy-out, and Murphy’s rousing performance – a display he described as “the best I’ve played for Leeds” – halted a streak of five back-to-back losses.
The victory over Blackpool came 24 hours after Cellino paid the remaining 35 per cent of wages deferred by United’s playing staff amid a financial crisis at the end of last month.
The Italian businessman insisted last week that he would “fix” the many problems at Elland Road and Murphy said: “It’s been a tough few weeks with all the uncertainty. You could feel the agitation amongst the fans because they didn’t know what was going on.
“Now it’s all sorted and we’ve got a new owner who wants to take the club in the right direction. I’ve met him. He asked me if I was a defender so I said ‘yes, I’m a defender.’ He asked Matt Smith if he’s a goalkeeper. I think he’s a bit of a joker!”
Cellino claimed on Saturday that United’s recent form – showing eight defeats from nine games before the clash with Blackpool – was an unfair reflection of the ability of Brian McDermott’s squad, saying the players were “better than they look, believe me.”
Murphy, who cost Leeds £1million from Crewe Alexandra last summer, shone in the win against Blackpool and struck in the 21st and 73rd minutes.
“It’s been a long time coming and first of all I’m delighted with the three points,” he said. “We haven’t had that feeling for a long time.
“It’s been a frustrating time for me not scoring many goals but that was possibly the best I’ve played for Leeds. There’ve been odd games during the season when I’ve done well but I’d probably say that overall it’s the best I’ve played so far.”