RIP Big Jack 10th July 2020 – including ITV Tribute Programme

I was honoured to be invited to pay my respects to Big Jack and his family by appearing on the ITV Tribute Programme. Hearing the news of his death caused lots of tears to flow as another of our legends leaves us to join Don Revie’s team in heaven. RIP and condolences to his family and friends.

ITV Tribute Programme

Photo courtesy Don Revie Tribute Evening – Leeds United Legends

Rest In Peace Trevor Cherry 29.4.2020

You were always my friend Carole’s hero hence why she made her banner, Power to yer boot Trevor. More sad news and so soon after losing Norman Hunter. Thoughts with your family and friends.

Change of topic – Photos from my early days of following Leeds at 11th April 2020

Additional photos added up to and including 15th July 2020. To take my mind off the challenging times due to coronavirus, I have started sharing some photos from my earlier days of following Leeds. Enjoy the memories.

Paris 1975 – European Cup Final

Barcelona 1975 – European Cup Semi-Final

Anderlecht 1975 – European Cup plus some photos from Luton on our way back

Zurich 1974 – European Cup

Pre-season friendlies

Amsterdam 1976

Eindhoven 1976

Odense 1977

Molenbeek 1977

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Ipswich 1974

QPR 1974 – Champions – We Won the League!

Coventry 1974-75

Three Legs in the 70s

Rangers v Hearts 1976 at Hampden Park

Celtic 1976

Arsenal 6th December 1975

Wolverhampton Wanderers FA Cup 6th round 19.3.77

Burnley 27.9.75 & in Supporters Club/ Three Legs

Selby train and Shrewsbury lot

Norman Hunter RIP 17.4.20

Yorkshire Post photos

Salonika 1973

Ipswich 13/1/75

Wolves 1976

Scotland v Wales at Anfield 12.10.77

England v Scotland International 4.6.77

Scotland v England at Hampden Park 15th May 1976
Hampden Park – Scotland v Northern Ireland 1st June 1977
Leeds fans outside the pub in Wrexham, Wales v Scotland 28th May 1977

World Cup 1974 – Scotland v Brazil in Frankfurt on 18th June

Scotland v England at Hampden Park 18th May 1974 – first photo taken by the Glasgow Herald and Evening Times

Photos from my early days of following Leeds United

Trevor Cherry rest in peace 29.4.2020

Daily Express photos 1975

 
The Square Ball 1990-1991 season – issue no 5. Famous Leeds fans – Princess Diana!
Billy Bremner, Paul Reaney and Don Revie at The Irish Centre, Leeds
Big H banner made by Ian and Leslie Halmshaw together with a poem by them too.

Menwith Hill Supporters Club dinner

Hibernian away 24th October 1973

Wembley FA Cup Final 6th May 1972 sadly only one photo

Eindhoven 1976 pushing the car round Europe, saved by the Army Les, Marj, Jan and Paul

 
The Kop’s Night Out at The Queens Hall, Leeds
Peter Lorimer’s testimonial fundraising event 24th September 1977

Leeds United team performing Cinderella at the City Varieties

Croda International – Croday Canaries

Burnley A 27th September 1975

Wimbledon 25th January 1975 – The South Stand under construction

Ujpest Dozsa European Cup 1975

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leeds United v Huddersfield Town 7th March 2020 at Elland Road

I’d not been worried at all about today’s game until a lad started talking to me about it at work. Suddenly, my stomach churning started but I decided that my out of sight, out of mind method works best! Just concentrate on Leeds United, it works wonders. Having been ill all week which I’ve blamed on going to Hull, it meant I haven’t posted as much this week. As we headed to Elland Road earlier than usual, it was because I’d won a couple of corporate tickets for the game. It was going to be a change to my usual routine of heading to the Peacock as my hubby accompanied me into the Pavilion. The place was packed out with more tables than usual and I know for some fans, it is the only way they can get a ticket now Elland Road is sold out every game. We enjoyed a three-course meal, drinks (we stuck with water and soft drinks) and saw Jermaine Beckford, Tony Dorigo, John Hendrie, Steve Hodge and Neil Aspin. The latter remembered coming to the Selby branch of the Supporter’s Club do when he won player of the year which he said must have been 1985. Ian and his daughter Lucy from Stafford had got the other pair of tickets in our group who also enjoyed the great hospitality that had been put on. The staff were very helpful and there was a good atmosphere in there. There were fans who had travelled from Bulgaria, Thailand, Australia and later I met a Danish Leeds fan to name a few, which shows once again the great worldwide fanbase we have.

Thank you for the support Tina, who had travelled from Scotland for the game, for buying my book Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds United. Also, thanks to those of you who spoke to me about following my blogs too. As we headed into the game things didn’t quite go to plan. I was swapping places with my daughter Michelle as she was joining my hubby in the corporate seats whilst I was going in the Kop as usual with my daughter Danielle and granddaughter Laura. As I waited for the girls, my hubby was queuing to get into the stand only to come back out of the turnstile. The damn ticket wouldn’t work, and it turns out that his wasn’t the only ticket with an issue today. As it was close to kick off, we got him in on the other ticket to make sure that one worked, and Michelle went to get a new one printed. We got in just before the teams came out.

The team: Meslier, Ayling, Cooper, Berardi, White, Dallas, Harrison, Costa, Bamford, Hernandez and Klich. Subs: Roberts for Bamford (79), Shackleton for Klich (83) and Alioski for Harrison (90). Referee: O. Langford. Attendance: 36,514 with 2,647 Town fans who’d sold out their allocation making this the highest of the season. Leeds won the game 2-0 with goals from Luke Ayling (3) and Bamford (51).

With Phillips out injured, Berardi came back into the defence again with White taking Phillip’s role. Leeds got off to a thunderous start taking the lead in the third minute. Harrison crossed a wonderful ball from the left to Ayling, who met it with a superb volley that hit the underside of the crossbar before hitting the back of the net as Elland Road erupted. What a start, that is just what we needed to set the tone of the game. I’d say that was a great celebration from Ayling for his daughter’s third birthday today. Things evened out for a while as Town had a good chance but Meslier managed to save the ball when he sat on it. They had a couple of corners and had lots of players trying to put Meslier off and it was nice to end up with the free kick for a foul with one of them.

Before the game when scores were being predicted, nearly everyone said we would concede one goal, whereas I insisted we had to give them nothing. Our breaking out of defence into attack nearly brought us a second goal but Costa’s chance went wide, as did another couple of chances by Harrison and White.

We’d gone into the break in the lead and I said we needed to start the second half the same as we did the first. Well I wasn’t far wrong. Although their keeper had to be on his toes to keep out both Harrison and Bamford, we increased our lead six minutes after the restart. Leeds won a free kick to the left of the box which Hernandez took. Their keeper made a fantastic save from White, but Bamford made no mistake when the ball came to him and he stuck it into the net to lift the roof off Elland Road. I was pleased to see Bamford get the just rewards for his hard work of recent weeks. During the game we were guilty of some bad passing at times from Berardi and Hernandez which resulted in Town getting the upper hand, but overall, we managed to deal with them quite well. When Harrison hit a fantastic shot from the left of us, it hit the angle of the crossbar and post to the right of us and Hernandez’s shot was then blocked. Wow, that move so deserved a goal. Elland Road was bouncing as the noise erupted around the ground into fever pitch as Leeds played some fantastic passing football. This was brought to a halt when a Town player went down before going off injured. That was a real shame because it took the sting out of the game. Although Town hadn’t given up, when one shot rebounded off Meslier, our defence were there backing him up and got the ball to safety. When the linesman to our left went off injured and the fourth official came on instead, we were hoping that he’d be better with the offside rule. Wrong! The first thing he did was put the flag up for offside to a chorus of boos from the Leeds fans. I hadn’t been unduly worried about them scoring but knew we’d be heading into a lot of injury time. With the goal, all the subs and the ref injury, I was expecting at least seven minutes added on, so it was a nice surprise to see only five minutes on the clock. When their player went down in the penalty area under a challenge in front of the South Stand, my heart sank as I expected the ref to point to the penalty spot. It was a relief when he gave a goal kick, and someone said their player was booked for diving. The ref had been very busy with his bookings today with three Leeds and three Town in total going into the book.

Another win and another three points which is all I ask for. Well done Leeds United as you’ve sent a fan base home very happy! Don’t worry about those other teams around us, concentrate on us and play to our strengths. We can do this just ‘Keep Fighting’ and never give up. See you for that early start to Cardiff on Sunday, LUFC – Marching on Together!

Author of the following books:

  • Follow Me and Leeds United
  • Once a Leeds fan, Always a Leeds fan
  • Co-author with Andrew Dalton of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of Leeds United, Leeds United in the 1980s
  • The Sleeping Giant Awakens, Leeds United 2016-17
  • Back to Reality, Leeds United 2017-18
  • Out now: Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds United

 Website: www.followmeandleedsunited.co.uk Twitter: @FollowMeAndLUFC Facebook: Follow Me and Leeds United: Instagram: Heidi Haigh – lufcheidi @followmeandleedsunited

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Hull City v Leeds United 29th February 2020 at the KCOM Stadium

Leeds United are never out of the news but the timing of the FA revealing their results from the Kiko case showed their true colours once again. The announcement at 7.30pm the evening before our game today, proclaimed, they had found him guilty on the probability of his supposed racist comment when we played at Charlton last year. Why on earth were their written findings not announced too so they could be scrutinised to see how they came to that conclusion? What happened to innocent until found guilty? Why is it assumed that the accuser was telling the truth and not Kiko when he denied the accusations? I think it is disgraceful that when Kiko said that he would never use words in a racist meaning, that the FA are able to cast a slur on someone that will be there for the rest of his life with their decision. I never saw anything untoward happen during the Charlton game and didn’t capture any photos that I took at the time that would have said something had taken place. Kiko had the support of the Leeds fans at the game today which shows that I’m not the only one questioning the decision that was made. I await the written findings from the FA now.

Our morning stop was in Selby and back in my neck of the woods. My friend Sue and I met at Selby High for girls in 1966 and have been friends ever since. Her dad took me to my first Leeds game for Sue’s 12th birthday and as you say, the rest is history as we are still here supporting our team. By the time we arrived in Hull the sun was shining. With more storms on the horizon it was a nice surprise. This time we had been given behind the goal which had sold out in minutes, but I know many Leeds fans had their tickets cancelled in the Hull end in the last few days. With an empty upper tier in the main stand, it would have made sense to sell them to our fans as they’d have sold out quickly too. The Leeds fans were in good voice underneath the stand where I’d gone after putting my flag up. With lads on shoulders or balancing on the partitions, they were keeping the rest of us entertained. I’d been queuing for a cuppa only to realise it was five minutes to kick-off so abandoned my queue to go to my seat.

The team: Meslier, Cooper, Ayling, White, Hernandez, Harrison, Costa, Bamford, Dallas, Phillips and Klich. Subs: Roberts for Bamford (66), Shackleton for Hernandez (88) and Alioski for Harrison (89). Referee: K. Stroud. Attendance: 16,178 with 3,519 Leeds fans plus 100+ in the Hull ends that came to join us in the away end. Leeds won the game 4-0 with goals from Ayling (5), Hernandez (47) and Roberts with a brace (81 and 84).

With a Leeds United team and the fans having a siege mentality today, we had to show others that together we are a force to be dealt with. Within five minutes we got off to a flying start taking the lead, when a fantastic shot from outside the area hurtled into the net from a deflection. As I was wondering who number 7 was as I didn’t have my glasses on, the fans starting chanting for Ayling. I must have had reminisces of Peter Lorimer with that shot. As the sun was shining so brightly and it was hard to see I put my glasses on as they have tinted lenses. It also got very hot in the sun although later when it went behind the clouds there was a chill in the air. A few minutes later another fantastic shot from Hernandez bounced back off the crossbar when it looked destined to give us a second goal. With Meslier making his league debut, he was very composed having taken the place of Casilla and I felt we were in safe hands. He made a save from a deflected Hull shot but Hull didn’t really put him under too much pressure. We had lots of possession during the first half and when Phillips was bundled off the ball to set up a Hull attack, he looked very upset. I think it was Ayling who tried to cheer him up. With Phillips coming back in after his injury, it looked like he may have to go off at half time as Berardi was being warmed up at the side of the pitch. Both Harrison and Costa were playing well down both wings, but we weren’t able to capitalise on our dominance before the break.

Luckily for us Phillips came back out for the second half as we set off with a bang after Hull had an early chance to equalise. Meslier made the save and a minute later we had doubled our lead. A great cross from Harrison saw Costa pass the ball to Hernandez who stuck it into the net to the jubilance of the Leeds fans. As Leeds continued to dominate, Hull had their keeper to thank for keeping our score down to two goals as he saved from both Costa and Klich. Hull did have a couple of chances but Meslier was on form tipping the ball over the crossbar and with another I thought he’d pushed the ball around the post when in fact it had hit it. He had the ball covered though. Bamford was booked after he’d been fouled. He’d got around their player on the wing after being held back and then their player pushed Bamford right in front of the ref. We couldn’t believe both getting booked instead of just the Hull player. Harrison hit a great shot which bounced back off the post with the keeper beaten which was a shame as he deserved a goal for that effort. When Costa had another shot saved by the keeper, Hull should be thankful he kept the score line down. As it was, we did increase our lead with Roberts getting a brace after pinpoint passes from Klich. The first was after Leeds charged out from defence with some great attacking which Roberts finished off and the second one was a header. That was it, game over as Hull fans streamed to the exits with the Leeds fans celebrating. The result was no more than we deserved though, and it was so nice to get a big win and the just rewards for our dominance even though at times it wasn’t a good game. In the last 15 minutes though Leeds our fitness levels told, as we were charging out of defence. I thought Harrison played very well today, and Costa got into the game a lot too. That was the reply needed from Leeds today to the powers that be, and long may it continue. On our way out of the ground there were a group of fans here from Argentina and one of them took a photo including me and then I caught our rogue’s gallery going back to the coaches. On our way back to Leeds a couple of photos showed how bad the flooding was in my locality which was sad to see.

Next week sees me going in early for my hospitality win but I may still go in my own seat for the game. I need to meet up with some fans and catch some of the Peacock Choir singing prior to the game so as usual it will be a busy day. Thanks for the feedback today from fans who have read my books, blogs or wanting to meet up for signings. As always, your comments are appreciated. See you on Saturday, LUFC – Marching on Together!

Author of the following books:

  • Follow Me and Leeds United
  • Once a Leeds fan, Always a Leeds fan
  • Co-author with Andrew Dalton of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of Leeds United, Leeds United in the 1980s
  • The Sleeping Giant Awakens, Leeds United 2016-17
  • Back to Reality, Leeds United 2017-18
  • Out now: Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds United

 Website: www.followmeandleedsunited.co.uk Twitter: @FollowMeAndLUFC Facebook: Follow Me and Leeds United: Instagram: Heidi Haigh – lufcheidi @followmeandleedsunited

Buy official LUFC retro shirts and jackets here

For all the latest news on Leeds

 

Middlesbrough v Leeds United 26th February 2020 at The Riverside