Ex-Leeds United man on inquisition into Elland Road planning errors as 'miracle' takes focus
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Leeds United are hoping for a miracle now and Big Sam will have to pick the players up, lift them and push them for another 90 minutes but it won't be easy. I've been relegated and it's really not a nice place to be, it's not a nice feeling. I think the boys will look back at this season and think they could have done more and done better.
The second half performance was hugely disappointing at West Ham United. The first 15 minutes actually went quite well, Patrick Bamford was here there and everywhere and we got the goal to go ahead, but then he limped off injured and West Ham pushed us back. After conceding we needed to show resolve to come back again and at times I felt West Ham were waiting for us to come at them, they weren't brilliantly at it themselves and we allowed them to play. The second half needed to show what we were about and nothing happened. It was passive. I couldn't believe it. We made changes that didn't do a lot for the game and in the position we are in, I expected a lot more.
I was in the press conference after the game and my ears pricked up when Allardyce said what he said about not having a centre forward. He has had time to see the squad train and play, to assess what we've got. This was his assessment and it's hard to argue with that. You look back then and think how did this happen and it's just one of the things you could look at to say we didn't do the right things or get who we needed in January.
The inquisition of what has happened will grow and grow once the game is over. The disappointment is that from reaching the highs under Marcelo Bielsa and the platform we were given through him, we have faltered with succession planning that has not worked. All those decisions and the people who made them - there is plenty of reflection that will be going.
Then there's the takeover. That always being in the background for such a long period of time hasn't helped. If we do go down, what needs to change, what is going to happen? It has to look different. It's a difficult situation but the sooner it's resolved the better. That will be the first thing on the agenda at 9am on Monday. There's still a tiny glimmer of hope and we've got to somehow grab onto that, the football still has to come first, but I'd expect big changes afoot for the summer.
In the meantime there is a game to play and in the situation they are in I'm not sure there's any weight to an argument that the pressure will somehow be off, or that they can play with any more freedom because there's been so much pressure on each and every single game and I look at what would happen if those results actually went our way and we didn't give everything. There's pressure on the players, on the club, on everyone and we can just go out there and hope. I think the difficulty will be if you hear that results elsewhere are going against us or if we concede a goal, that could leave everyone feeling flat and resigned to what's going to happen. Players will have to put it to the back of their minds and keep going. You never, ever know. That experience at Brentford last season was incredible, that we actually managed to come out of that situation a Premier League club. Doing it again, and doing it with two other teams involved and not just one, seems an enormous ask.
The atmosphere at Elland Road will be supportive to start with as it always is. It's just what happens on the pitch. The fans have been wonderful, everyone wants the right result but equally everyone is frustrated and if it starts to go against us it will be a difficult atmosphere.
We can only hope, now, that it doesn't come to that and we pull off what really would be the greatest escape.