Leeds United boss Simon Grayson has been named npower Championship Manager of the Month for December.
The Whites boss presided over an unbeaten month which saw his side pick up 11 points including wins over QPR, Burnley and Crystal Palace. Head of the judging panel Alan Curbishley said: “It was a great month for Grayson and Leeds United. A notable win over leaders QPR really stood out, and has put United firmly into the promotional race.”
Incredibly this is his first award, despite numerous nominations and his sides amazing first half of last season. Grayson told the clubs official website: “I’m proud to have won it. A lot of hard work has gone in by my players and the rest of the staff. It’s testament to the efforts of everyone and how hard we have worked over the past few weeks and months.”
Cup money used for transfers.
United Chairman Ken Bates has promised part of the funds from the clubs FA Cup run to Simon Grayson’s transfer war chest.
It is reported in The Yorkshire Evening Post that the club budgeted for minimal income from this year’s competition. However, following the plumb tie at Arsenal, and the bumper pay day from both the gate receipts and the TV money, the choice by ITV to show the replay live has led to a possible windfall in the region of £500K. “It will be (a big financial boost),” said Bates. “In our budget we always assume we’ll be drawn away for both the Carling Cup and FA Cup, knocked out in the first round and have no TV. We assume very little income. The money we’re getting from the Arsenal games will go straight into our coffers and help us continue to improve the club, on and off the field. We weren’t expecting anything at the Emirates and I told Simon to tell the players to go out, give a good account of themselves and don’t worry about a thing.”
Should United beat the faltering Gunners in the replay, then they will receive more cash with the 4th Round tie against Huddersfield Town selected by ESPN for live coverage.
Grayson undecided on returning loan players.
Simon Grayson has revealed he is undecided on the future for the host of players who have returned to the club from loan spells.
Carlisle (as reported yesterday) are keen to renew the loans of Lubo Michalik and Mike Grella. Grayson told LeedsUnited.com: “There are one or two options for Lubo to consider and we will see what the future holds. Mike is a different situation in that he is a longer term with us and we’ll assess him over the next week or so.” Grella will find it difficult to earn a place in the squad with Billy Paynter, Ross McCormack and Davide Somma all vying for a place alongside, or in place of, Luciano Becchio. It’s a situation Grayson is acutely aware of: “There’s no point him being here if he isn’t going to feature at this moment in time.”
Aidy White has returned from his spell at Oldham Athletic with an ankle injury, but the League One side have again intimated that they would be keen for him to return. Tom Elliott has also returned from a spell at Rotherham United where the 21-year-old striker made just seven appearances without scoring.