Leeds United fans bombarded the YEP website and the paper’s social media channels after prospective owner Massimo Cellino was found guilty of tax evasion. Here’s a taste of their views.
Andrew T: Oh dear here we go again. Next owner will you please stand up.
Andrew Larkin: They don’t mess about in Italy do they. Could he still pass FPP with this? He’s only been fined after all.
HenryVL: As business men go, Cellino is not bad at all. He loves football and he can afford to rebuild Leeds. What more is there? Why should Leeds be the only club that has to find an angel as owner?
ka01: My view from LS11 is although Phil Hay dismisses the point about Elornora sports being the buyers and not Massimo Cellino I think the Football League will have to take it into account.
WhiteSoul: Administration - GFH and Haigh say this will not happen. GFH have spent around £40m buying Leeds from Bates and funding its £1m monthly losses since, and they would lose all that if the club went into administration. Although they are reluctant to fund the club any more, as a bank they say they do have access to money, and will keep Leeds going until another buyer can be found. MOT.
Hope Springs Eternal: The Football League have been waiting for the outcome of the court case for one reason, now they have that reason. I cannot see Cellino passing now, let’s face it. Bates will be loving it, we will probably go into administration and a 30 point deduction because it’s about time the Football League made an example out of someone so hey, let that someone be Leeds.
Kiwi White 62: Don’t give up yet folks. The Football League confirm talks are ongoing with Cellino’s legal advisers following ruling.
Matt The White: I think the speculation needs to stop now. I’ve gone from laughing my backside off at some comments to a nervous wreck over others. Yes we’re all concerned but I think we just need to wait and see what happens. Let the bricks fall where they may. Either: 1. Cellino gets FL approval - in which case all this stressing was unfounded; 2. He doesn’t - and Farnam buys us, which at least means we survive; 3. Or no takeover goes through and then we worry about the possibility about administration. That’s a few steps ahead though and I want to believe Haigh that it’s not a possibility. Either way three points on Saturday would be most welcome. MOT.
The StruttingPeacock: Cellino must regret ever buying that yacht; the worst thing is I don’t think he’s hardly even used it. It’s a bit of a white elephant when you think about it.
View from LS11: We carry on supporting our club, it’s never been easy. It’s us against the rest on a unequal playing field.
JimmyBlue: What’s the betting now on administration I wonder?
Micky24: Only one thing to do now sell the players, sell the ground. Shopping centre is all it’s fit for now. Bet Billy Bremner and Don Revie are turning in their graves to this shambles.
Woody68: It’s not over until the fat lady sings. Cellino in... forever the optimist!
CodfatherLUFC: Legally I don’t see how the Football League can reject Cellino as it’s not him on paper buying the club.
Persolus2012: Maybe the Football League are saying to Cellino’s lawyers something to the effect that, as this not a ‘serious criminal case’ if Mr Cellino drops the appeal, accepts the charge and pays the fine, then the Football League would consider the conviction spent and they could then move forward on ownership. That way everybody wins, the Football League have seen justice to be done, Cellino gets ownership, and Leeds United can become a football club again rather than a soap opera.
Iluvleeds: And what have we learned from this whole saga?
Chris7286: I need to get some of whatever you lot have been smoking. Some of the places your minds have taken this guilty verdict is just enlightening.
Winstonthebulldog: Cellino will buy the club.
Todgertownwhite: Don’t forget, it’s only the other day Cellino said that if he loses, he would walk away without a fight, do you think he might have been expecting this outcome?
DrD: Any chance that the lottery winner is a Leeds Fan. Invest £50m in buying Leeds with £10-15m set aside for players. Cheers.
Count of Monte: So the timeline now is: Friday - FL say he has failed the FPPT; Next week he demands his money back; Next Friday we go into admin again, despite Haigh’s claims last week! The Football League wait ’till we have lost to Derby then announce that our punishment will be whatever the gap is between us and third bottom plus 1 point. I am no mystic Meg but you would be surprised if any of this DIDN’T happen wouldn’t you? Totally sick of LUFC, whatever happens we need to demand that there is a window. Just like the transfer window, clubs can only be bought or sold to other skint owners between Jan 1st and Jan 31st. At least that would give us some respite.
TheresOnlyOneClive: The fit and proper persons test must surely be about football, otherwise what’s the point? What has paying tax on a yacht got to do with football? What is the test worth if it allows an investment bank, who are only out to make a quick profit, to takeover a club, but denies a man willing to make a serious investment to take a club forward?
MPM Leeds: Message to the Football League, Mr Cellino doesn’t need a yacht to run a football club so what is the problem! Get him in now!
Mr Ploppy: Who is paying this month’s wages? Will Massimo ever get his money back?
LUFCQuej: Everybody seems to be forgetting that it isn’t Massimo Cellino who was buying Leeds United. Eleanora Sport are the buyers, of whom Cellino only owns about 10 per cent of the shares, the rest being owned by the “Family Trust”.
Nothing has happened here that would stop Eleanora Sports from completing their purchase. Just that Cellino would not be able to own 30 per cent of Eleanora or be allowed to be a director or be in control of Leeds United. I still fully expect Eleanora Sport to be our new owners.
Tyke555: I have read an article in Italy’s Il Gazzeta which suggests the yacht was sailed into Italy only for it to suffer damage and therefore unable to sail out as was the intention, hence why it was then moored up and therefore falling foul of Italy’s import laws. Maybe if this is more of an administrative blunder court papers may reflect this. Dunno if this would have any bearing.
DevonWhite: I think too many on here are leaping to conclusions about what the FL might now do. They have not yet made any decision - or if they have they have not yet made that decision public - so should we not all wait to see what they do say before commenting? After all, it is still possible that Cellino will get FL approval, though he may not. Let us hope that the Football League do sanction the takeover - if they do not then THAT is the time to start criticising those involved.
Persolus2012: So now what happens with the Football League? Do they declare within their stated 10 days even if the appeal has not been heard? And if they decide now that Cellino is not ‘fit and proper’, but then he is acquitted on appeal...what then? Or do we now extend the 10 days and for the appeal?
dkershaw4: What I don’t understand is why is this all about Cellino? Officially he isn’t buying the club. He owns 10 per cent of a consortium who is buying the club so there must be four or five other people involved.