Leeds United Supporters’ Trust: Remembering the legacy of the ‘incredible’ Albert Johanneson

In this week’s column, written by the board of the Leeds United Supporters’ Trust, the anniversary of the death of the remarkable Albert Johanneson is marked and it’s onwards and upwards to Manchester City this weekend.

By The Board of the Leeds United Supporters’ Trust
Saturday, 3rd October 2020, 11:45 am
A blue plaque pays tribute to Albert Johanneson sits at the entrance to the East Stand at Elland Road.
A blue plaque pays tribute to Albert Johanneson sits at the entrance to the East Stand at Elland Road.

Our first away win of the season, a very tight affair and a Yorkshire derby, was ultimately decided by the sheer precision of Patrick Bamford’s nose!

There were some great performances right across the pitch for Leeds United, but there was one player who was absolutely outstanding - Illan Meslier. Two of his saves were simply world class and it shows that we’re in safe hands with him in goal this season.

We know the Leeds United fanbase feel exactly the same, because Meslier was nominated in over two thirds of the votes cast on the Trust’s man of the match competition.

These votes are by fans on Twitter and Facebook after each game during the season. After only three Premier League games, over 6,000 votes have already been cast.

The player with the most man of the match wins by the end of the season will receive the Trust’s annual Paul Madeley Memorial Award, which has been won in the last two years by the Yorkshire Pirlo himself, Kalvin Phillips.

It would have been Paul Madeley’s 76th birthday on September 20 and I’m sure he would have been mightily impressed with the standard of football we’veve seen at Leeds United since Marcelo Bielsa took charge.

Particularly that individual players can perform so well in various different positions across the pitch, something that Paul did for Don Revie for many glorious years.

Another legendary player from the club’s past was Albert Johanneson, who sadly passed away 25 years ago this week.

As Billy Bremner put it “Albert was incredible - he would spin, turn and leave defenders 10 yards behind in the blink of an eye”.

The Trust were directly involved in arranging a permanent tribute to Albert last year, which was a Leeds Civic Trust blue plaque that can be found at the East Stand entrance of Elland Road.

Albert was the first black player to play in an FA Cup Final at Wembley and the great Eusebio once said that “generations of black footballers should look to Albert Johanneson and thank him for what he achieved “

Turning to the present day, the Trust are well aware that there is now unfortunately no date set for when fans can start attending football matches again.

We realise how disappointing that is and you can be assured that the Trust will liaise closely with the club, key local stakeholders and the Football Supporters Association to actively support a return to the stands when it is safe to do so for both the fans and the wider community in Leeds.

Onwards and upwards to the next game against Manchester City. We’re already three points ahead in the table so it’s a real six pointer for them!

Adding your own voice to the Trust’s work is easy. Simply visit our website at www.leedsunitedtrust.com and become a member for just £10 per year. As a member, you can alsoenrol your child for free as a Future Trust member!

Marching on together.