Leeds Utd news – McCartney signs, Naylor could return, Michalik exit

McCartney signs.

Leeds United have signed left-back George McCartney on loan from Sunderland until the end of the season.

The 29-year-old Northern Ireland international returns for a second loan spell following his successful stint which expired at the end of 2010. He played 17 times and was a key part of United’s twelve match unbeaten run. With Ben Parker having just returned from a lengthy injury spell and Federico Bessone seemingly out of favour, Simon Grayson was keen for McCartney to return.

Talking to LeedsUnited.com the Whites boss said: “I’m delighted we’ve been able to bring George back until the end of the season. He did well over the course of his last spell and I know what he can bring to the table.”

McCartney is expected to join the squad for the game against Scunthorpe United, but will be ineligible for the FA Cup 3rd Round replay against Arsenal.

Michalik exit.

Slovakian international defender Lubomir Michalik has left Leeds United with his contract being terminated by mutual consent.

The 27-year-old was told he could leave the club in the summer and was recently loaned out to Carlisle United. The Cumbrian club immediately snapped up Michalik on a permanent 18 month contract, a move which delighted Carlisle manager Greg Abbott, who told the clubs official website: “It’s a fantastic signing for the club and adds even more quality to the squad, He’s a popular lad and had a big impact during his half season loan deal. We’re hoping that will now continue into the future.”

Michalik had struggled to make an impact under Simon Grayson and found himself slipping down the pecking order at Elland Road. He signed for the club initially on loan from Bolton Wanderers in March 2007. He was signed permanently by Gary McAllister in January 2008.

Naylor could return.

Leeds United skipper Richard Naylor is being lined up to make a shock return for Saturday’s clash with Scunthorpe United.

The 33-year-old centre back could replace Alex Bruce who appeared to pick up a knock in the draw against Arsenal in the FA Cup. With George McCartney returning for an extended loan spell, Ben Parker could miss out. In midfield both Neil Kilkenny and Ramon Nunez are away on international duty, and with Adam Clayton still on loan at Peterborough, transfer-listed Bradley Johnson and Jonny Howson are the only recognized central midfielders. Lloyd Sam is unavailable following an injury at Cardiff, but Simon Grayson has an embarrassment of riches in the forward positions. Leeds beat Scunthorpe 4-1 at Glanford Park earlier in the season.

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