Do you think Leeds United are good enough to win promotion this season?
I say yes every year so why change the habit of a lifetime? But I’m more confident now than I was this time last year. We’ve got a good manager and the team’s falling into place. I’m not saying it’s the finished article and I’ve got a few concerns about more players coming in because we really need wingers and another centre-back to go with Tom Lees. Then there’s the dead wood to get rid of. But I’m quite optimistic.
Is Brian McDermott the man for the job at Elland Road?
I think so, definitely. When there was talk of Nigel Adkins coming in February I always thought McDermott would be a better option. Similar, but better. He talks a lot of sense, he’s down to earth and I reckon he’s got a bit of a nasty side too. Every good manager’s got that. He’ll be good for us.
Who will be United’s key player?
Two of the new boys, Luke Murphy and Noel Hunt. That’s nothing against Matt Smith. I’m just not sure how much he’ll play. Hopefully, Ross McCormack, pictured, will hit a run of form too because I really rate him. He’ll get us 20 goals if he’s in the right position with the right players around him. And then there’s Sam Byram. I’ve got my fingers crossed that he stays with the club.
Who in the squad will be the surprise package?
The player I want to see come good is Aidy White. He’s gone off the boil in the last year and I think he needs the reins put on him – a bit of guidance and direction. I honestly think he’s a cracking player with loads of pace and it would be nice to see him get a run in the side. He needs to improve, but he needs a bit of help too.
Which clubs do you expect to pose the biggest threat in the Championship this season?
It’s so hard to say. Most likely the teams with the money. Reading are going to be strong and I can’t see QPR being far off the pace either, so long as they’re in decent shape financially. Bolton have spent quite a bit of money but they won’t do anything. I don’t fancy them at all.
How happy are you with the job that GFH Capital has done since buying Leeds last December?
I’m happy. I think the owners have played it just right. Obviously we want a few more bodies through the door but they’ve always said that they’re an investment company and that’s very different from an individual with money to burn. They’ve wiped away the previous regime, which is a good thing, and they’re going down the right lines.
Where do you expect Leeds to finish in the Championship table?
In the play-offs.