Former Leeds United manager Simon Grayson has broken his silence two and a half months after leaving the club and said the lack of financial support was the major undoing of his side.
Grayson had seen some of his main players leave Elland Road following the clubs promotion to the championship in the summer of 2010.
Despite losing the clubs leading goalscorer for the three previous seasons Jermaine Beckford in that summer, Leeds finished a creditable seventh in their first season back in the second tier of English football.
Grayson was sacked following the 4-1 home defeat to Birmingham at the end of January despite the club sitting just three points outside the play-off places and Grayson was disappointed with the timing of his dismissal with the position the club were in.
Speaking on the BBC Late Kick covering Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, Grayson said,“It is part and parcel of football that you get the sack. I was disappointed at the time because we were in a good position. We was only three points outside the play offs and we were looking to get into the play offs over the remainder of the season.”
Leeds chairman Ken Bates has continuously had his say since the departure of Grayson, blaming the size of the squad and the quality of the players Grayson brought into the squad. Grayson has been left disappointed with comments made since his departure and he feels he left the club in a much better position than when he took over in December 2008. “A few things have come out since I have left the football club that I wasn`t too happy about because I have kept my silence and my dignity. It is a fantastic football club and I will never regret the decision to join them. My staff and I left the club in a far better state than it was in when we walked in three years earlier,” added Grayson.
Grayson lost further key members of his squad last summer and in the first six months of this season and Grayson says Leeds missed out on replacing players by a lack of investment.
Grayson continued.“I would have done things differently had I been given the opportunity. We finished seventh the previous season and over achieved when we just missed out on the play offs. The summer came along, we wanted to invest to take us to the next level, and we didn`t manage to do that. We didn`t get the players that I would have liked to have brought into the squad to really have a go for it.
“Results dictate eventually what happens but we weren`t in a bad position when we left.
“I think when you get to a certain position you would like to think you can take the club to the next level. You look at Southampton and Reading, they looked like they are going to go up and they spent money in the summer. Jack Cork (Southampton) and Kaspars Gorkss (Reading) and these were players that we wanted to sign in the summer. There are big expectancy levels at Leeds and sometimes they are not matched elsewhere.”
As well as losing Bradley Johnson and Neil Kilkenny to free transfers last summer Grayson also saw goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel sold to Leicester City, all three key players in Leeds first season back in the championship.
The clubs player of the year Max Gradel was then sold to French side St Etienne before the transfer window closed in August and club captain Jonny Howson was sold to Norwich City in January.
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