Whilst former Leeds United players and fans turned out on Saturday to mark the unveiling of a statue to commemorate Don Revie, there was no national exposure of the occasion in the tabloids or broadsheets. One fan got an abrupt response from one chief sports writer after asking the simple question, where was your exposure to mark the occasion?
The Leeds United legend has never received the credit he deserved for thirteen wonderful years at Elland Road. During that time Leeds United became a household name all over the world and a side that was feared all across Europe, from one that was fighting relegation from the Second Division.
Today marks the 40th anniversary of Don Revie`s Leeds United lifting The FA Cup, a competition that under Revie Leeds also finished runners-up on three occasions.
Revie took Leeds United from an ordinary Second Division side in the early 60`s to a side that was challenging on all fronts both domestically and on the European stage for ten years.
Following Leeds promotion to Division One in the 1963/64 season, Leeds went on to be crowned champions of England twice and finish runners-up on a further five occasions.
Probably Leeds determination under Revie cost them winning more than they actually did as they were usually in the fight on four fronts until the closing weeks of the season.
Leeds won their first domestic honour in 1968 when they lifted the League Cup. The same season they also won the Fairs Cup, a year after losing in the final.
They went on to win the competition again in1970/71.
Leeds were denied more European success in the 1972/73 season when AC Milan beat them in the Cup winners cup in a game that Leeds have always felt they were robbed of glory by some strange refereeing decisions.
In his last season at Elland Road Leeds set a First Division record when they went unbeaten for their first 29 games of the season on their way to the First Division title.
So, with all that said, one Leeds fan, Adey Curd who is the chairman of the Thames Valley Whites supporters club sent an email to Patrick Collins, the chief sports writer with the Daily Mail. He was simply enquiring as to why there had been no exposure from the paper following the unveiling on Saturday.
His email went like this:
I read your article on Bobby Robson’s statue’s unveiling today with interest and agree that it is, indeed, a lovely gesture to a genuine ‘football’ man.
However, you are probably not too interested to know that yesterday, Leeds United unveiled a statue to Don Revie, a great manager, in his own right. Just once, it would be an achievement if a ‘Chief Sports Writer’ acknowledged the man in a positive light for the successes that he brought to his club – the one he loved and nurtured if we want to become sentimental about it.
I suspect that there will be plenty of column inches next season when Mr Warnock hopes to emulate The Don and ‘Leeds United kick their way out of the second tier of English Football’.
Without expectations, regards,
Mr Collins response was short and sweet and he also had a dig at Leeds current manager, the one who has won promotion seven times in his career, a Football League record.
Thank you for your message concerning the Don Revie statue. I appreciate your views about Revie, but I cannot share them.
As for Warnock, I`m not sure how he features in a discussion about great managers.
Leeds were branded as ‘Dirty Leeds` for their no-nonsense style, something that often overlooked the quality of football they also played.
They never got the credit their football deserved and it seems that almost 40 years later the press still dislike Leeds and the football played by Don Revie`s side.
Maybe one day.
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