NEIL REDFEARN says Leeds United’s players must not be distracted by dramatic off-the-field developments at Elland Road after owner Massimo Cellino lost his appeal against his disqualification from owning the club.
The dismissal of Cellino’s appeal against being disqualified as a director and owner by the Football League may be hogging the headlines today, but Redfearn is acutely conscious of the pressing need to concentrate on significant on-pitch business against the Championship leaders Bournemouth tonight (7.45pm).
The United head coach says the players remain behind Cellino and focused on the task at hand against the Cherries.
Redfearn, whose 20th-placed side are without a win in eight games, said: “It is a big game and we have got to focus on that.
“We are playing well at the moment and got a good point against Bolton and Birmingham on Saturday.
“We have just got to come down the same lines and make sure we give the same sort of performance and have that resoluteness and try and get three points.
“To be fair, the players have shown a lot of spirit and shown they are behind the president.
“The effort and determination they are putting in is there for everyone to see.
“We just need a little bit more luck in front of goal.
“We are playing well enough and creating chances and with a bit steadying finishing and nerve, we would have gone on and beaten a good side in Birmingham who are on a run of form – same as Bolton.”
Meanwhile, Redfearn has paid tribute to Scott Wootton, who made his first appearance for United since August 30 in Saturday’s draw against Blues.
Wootton came in from the cold at the weekend after returning from a loan spell at Rotherham United and impressed in the 1-1 draw.
Millers boss Steve Evans confirmed that Cellino had put the block on a move back to the club, with Wootton admitting he has not ‘got a clue’ about whether his future is at Leeds or elsewhere.
Redfearn said: “Scott played really well in that position.
“What he does is give us a bit of a physical presence and bite at the back as well and is comfortable on the ball.”
Redfearn has also hailed the recent form of striker Steve Morison – and while the ex-Millwall man may be still awaiting his first United goals since March 2013 – the United head coach feels he has added a physical dimension to United’s attacking play.
He said: “Steve has come in and led the line really well and gives us a different option.
“We look at little bit different now with balls into the box and have got a physical presence now.”