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Posts Tagged ‘Tom Elliot’

Georges BaIvory Coast international, Georges Ba who was recently on trial at Leeds has signed for Gillingham.

Whilst on trial at Leeds, speculation was that Gary McAllister was looking to strengthen his options upfront, following Leon Constantine’s loan move and the goal drought Jermaine Beckford was experiencing.

However, Jermaine Beckford found the net twice against Walsall last week, bringing an end to his drought and loan signing Dougie Freedman has continually impressed during his brief spell so far at Elland Road.

The reason behind McAllister’s decision not to sign the Ivory Coast international remains unclear, as Leeds have not issued any statement regarding him, but it would seem the partnership between Jermaine and Dougie satisfied the manager enough that he didn’t feel he needed to strengthen the squad further (a decision he may regret following yesterdays endless array of missed chances.)

Leeds also have plenty of backup in the striker department with Tresor Kandol, Anthony Elliot and youngster Tom Elliot all at McAllister’s disposal.

Gillingham are awaiting for international clearance for Georges Ba, but have so far handed the striker – who was a free agent – a contract until the end of the current season.

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Fabian Delph - Star of the future. Gary McAllister is determined to strip down the size of Leeds United’s squad to make room for the youngsters coming through the ranks.

 On joining Leeds a couple of months back, McAllister inherited a squad that by size would probably not be far off that of Barcelona or Chelsea (slight exaggeration, perhaps?), but the new gaffer has worked quickly to trim down the numbers, using the recent loan window to offload some of the players that I assume he didn’t need, or who thought required first team experience.

McAllister has already welcomed England Under-19 international, Fabian Delph and Tom Elliot into the first team training sessions since his arrival and is keen to bring more youngsters through as time goes on.

Gary insists that having so many players available for first team selection, hinders the chances of youngsters making it through and wants to move some players out so he can start to blood some of the next generation.

McAllister is a firm believer in grass roots football, and believes this will be Leeds United’s way back to the starry heights of the Premier League.

Leeds United are a club that have always prided themselves on the young players they bring through. The last generation saw stars such as Harry Kewell, Alan Smith and more recently Aaron Lennon coming through the Elland Road ranks, amongst many others and it is this legacy that Leeds will be looking to uphold as they try and build a team capable of restoring Leeds’ top flight status.

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Jermaine BeckfordIt’s a rare occurrence that any football fan will argue a case for dropping the leagues top goal scorer, but in Jermaine Beckford, Leeds United have an extremely out-of-form goal lacking striker, that seems to be keeping his place in the starting line up solely on his exploits earlier this season.

Jermaine Beckford still sits at the top of League One’s goal scoring chart, but has failed to deliver the amount of goals he was earlier in the season for the last couple of months and seems absolutely lost in front of goal lately.

I’m not sure Gary McAllister is confident enough to make such an high profile change to the starting line up yet, but if Beckford’s form continues he really has to start looking at other options.

Dougie Freedman has already made a huge impact at Elland Road, scoring twice away last week to earn a point in a thrilling 3-3 draw – although a stronger defence would have seen Leeds easily claim all three – whilst fellow newcomer Anthony Elding scored a late consolation goal after coming on as a sub against Cheltenham, followed by two goals for the reserves on Tuesday.

We also have youngster Tom Elliot waiting in the wings who has continually impressed throughout the season at reserve level and may well be ready to take the step up.

Tresor Kandol’s dismal form and hapless finishing has already paved the way for Dougie Freedman to try and seal his first team place, but will Jermaine Beckford be the next scalp? If he doesn’t start coming up with goods soon, you would suspect so.

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Georges BaGary McAllister has handed a trial to 29-year-old, Ivory Coast striker Georges Ba.

 McAllister had his first glimpse of the striker after he took part in a reserve fixture against Sheffield Wednesday on Tuesday night. Ba failed to score, and was replaced by youngster, Tom Elliot after 81 minutes.

Anthony Elding, who scored his first goal for Leeds United in the 2-1 defeat to Cheltenham last week scored twice as Leeds’ reserves drew 2-2.  

Although Gary McAllister now has numerous options upfront, with the likes of Tresor Kandol, Jermaine Beckford, Anthony Elding and Dougie Freedman all available, he may well look to Ba for further strength following Leon Constantine’s loan move.

Meanwhile, Republic of Ireland international Jonathan Douglas made his long awaited return to action in the reserve clash playing the entire game with no problems reported.

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