Season over, feet up and a cold beer for Kyle Bartley, and Leeds fans wondering where it all went wrong as they narrowly missed out on a play-off place.
Seventh is where the Whites finished this season, better than previous seasons when mid-table was seen as an achievement. Seventh place in the table, under a regime that was in flux and changing is more than respectable for Leeds United.
Next season should see Leeds start under the full ownership of Andrea Radrizzani, the Italian media rights mogul in the finishing straight to acquiring Massimo Cellino’s 50% share of the club. Under a new owner, one with ambition and a vision, next season could be a good one for the Whites.
But planning aforethought is needed, a solid base and a vision of what is needed to be put in place before the season starts is a must. No longer can it all be down to the last minute, fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants planning that once saw Leeds travel to Italy, beat a village team 16-0, sit in a cold stream and then play each other when their other pre-season opponents simply didn’t turn up.
Ah the days of David Hockaday and the early throes of Massimo Cellino’s reign at Elland Road. With that reign coming to an end, Leeds fans will unite behind the ‘never again’ mantra – instead wanting to see forward planning, continuity and organisation for once.
That is what the push for Garry Monk to be signed up is all about – the need for consistency and planning above all else. Monk was employed by Massimo Cellino on a one-year rolling contract, but now there is a push for Monk to be rewarded more richly.
Fans have created an online petition demanding Monk be signed to a longer deal and #SignGarryMonk was trending earlier in the week. It seems, as per social media rumours, that progress has been made here.
These “coming weeks” cannot arrive fast enough for Leeds United fans keen for Monk to get his feet under the table and begin to plot next season, put the key elements in place. Thankfully, as the following tweet shows, the former Swansea manager knows just what it takes.
A signed up Monk, with his own ideas backed to the hilt by Andrea Radrizzani, could lead to a very tasty campaign next season – a campaign where this season acted as a mere hors d’oeuvre for what could unfold next.
But perhaps the most important thing about signing Monk up is what he talks about here in this tweet.
Thankfully, at last, there is a sense that the Whites are living up to their name in that they are finally becoming United.