Leeds United news: Loanee addresses long-term future as former Premier League rivals hit with huge sanction
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Leeds United are sitting third in the Championship as they gear up for a return to action against Rotherham United next week. The Whites went into the international break in stunning form, beating Leicester City and Plymouth Argyle in their final two outings to make it six wins from seven games.
It was a different story for next Friday's opponents, who sacked Matt Taylor after a 5-0 loss at Watford with chairman Tony Stewart admitting a replacement is unlikely before Leeds visit South Yorkshire. A number of Leeds players have jetted off to represent their respective countries before returning to Thorp Arch next week to prepare for a clash with the Millers.
There is not another international break until March, as Leeds look to make up the ground to Leicester and Ipswich Town, who currently occupy the top two spots in the second tier. As Leeds await their return to action, here's your Friday evening round-up.
Roca addresses future
Leeds United loanee Marc Roca insists his future at Elland Road is a matter for club hierarchies at Real Betis and the Whites to discuss. The midfielder has impressed during his loan so far in Spain, and Betis are reportedly eager to make his move permanent.
He has started in 12 of the club's 13 La Liga games, with two goals and one assist to his name. In an interview with Radio Marca, Roca reflected on his first experience of the Sevilla v Real Betis derby - a match hailed as one of the biggest games in Spain due to the proximity of the two clubs - as the sides drew 1-1 last Sunday. Roca said he feels comfortable at the La Liga club but was keen to point out he still has a contract with Leeds, which runs until 2026.
He said: “I feel the colours. The other day we had the derby. I felt a lot of emotion. I had goosebumps - I felt like crying with emotion. I said: 'These people, those things make you feel more colours'. I am very comfortable here. God will tell. In the end I have a contract with Leeds. This is a matter for the clubs.”
Everton docked points
Leeds United's former Premier League rivals Everton have been deducted 10 points by the Premier League. The Toffees have been locked in legal discussions with the Premier League over breaches of profitability and sustainability rules, which function as the English top flight's Financial Fair Play measures.
It has now been confirmed the Toffees have lost their battle, dropping to 19th place in the table and will go from 14 points to level with bottom club Burnley on four points as a result. The Premier League statement read: "An independent Commission has imposed an immediate deduction of 10 points on Everton FC for a breach of the Premier League’s Profitability and Sustainability Rules (PSRs).
"The Premier League issued a complaint against the Club and referred the case to an independent Commission earlier this year. During the proceedings, the Club admitted it was in breach of the PSRs for the period ending Season 2021/22 but the extent of the breach remained in dispute.
"Following a five-day hearing last month, the Commission determined that Everton FC’s PSR Calculation for the relevant period resulted in a loss of £124.5million, as contended by the Premier League, which exceeded the threshold of £105million permitted under the PSRs. The Commission concluded that a sporting sanction in the form of a 10-point deduction should be imposed. That sanction has immediate effect."
Everton responded to the decision with a statement of their own, saying: "Everton Football Club is both shocked and disappointed by the ruling of the Premier League's Commission. The Club believes that the Commission has imposed a wholly disproportionate and unjust sporting sanction. The Club has already communicated its intention to appeal the decision to the Premier League. The appeal process will now commence and the Club's case will be heard by an Appeal Board appointed pursuant to the Premier League's rules in due course.
"Everton maintains that it has been open and transparent in the information it has provided to the Premier League and that it has always respected the integrity of the process. The Club does not recognise the finding that it failed to act with the utmost good faith and it does not understand this to have been an allegation made by the Premier League during the course of proceedings. Both the harshness and severity of the sanction imposed by the Commission are neither a fair nor a reasonable reflection of the evidence submitted.
"The Club will also monitor with great interest the decisions made in any other cases concerning the Premier League's Profit and Sustainability Rules. Everton cannot comment on this matter any further until the appeal process has concluded."