Rumours fly around thick and fast during any transfer window with the January one being particularly potent as teams gear up for pushes up the table to promotion or away from relegation. Leeds United are no different and the club saw one name in particular linked to Elland Road that drew gasps as the Whites were linked to Stoke City’s ex-England international Peter Crouch.
However, despite Leeds wanting to bolster their attacking options, the club were knocked back by the management at Stoke. With the Whites being told that Crouch wasn’t available for loan, Leeds are having to look elsewhere for a goal threat but this hasn’t stopped the Stoke management being critical of the way that Leeds United have comported themselves with regard to the ‘approach’ for the 6ft 7in forward.
Speaking in his Thursday press conference, and quoted on the insidefutbol website, Steve Evans let on that a deal for Crouch wouldn’t stand up – Evans going on to say, “My understanding is that Peter Crouch is not available.” This utterance from Evans has drawn criticism from Stoke manager Mark Hughes, who isn’t happy with the way that he sees the Leeds United manager breaking the accepted protocol. For Hughes, making such private information public just isn’t on.
Quoted in a Yorkshire Post ‘Gossip Column’ article, Hughes said, “Some clubs flag it up and name names. I don’t think that’s correct, to be perfectly honest, but I haven’t had any direct conversation with any manager in regard to Peter. Peter’s one who we want to keep here. He’s not long signed a new contract. He came on in midweek and played a part, so we still feel he’s very much a part of what we’re doing here.”
In a battle of the Uniteds, Evans’ Leeds face Rotherham in the FA Cup Third Round tomorrow buoyed by the two loan signings of a returning Liam Bridcutt to Elland Road as well as a welcome to Mustapha Carayol as Leeds look to avenge a 1-0 home defeat in the Championship by the same opponents.