Much to ponder for Leeds United at final game

Rudy Austin, could be set to play his last game for Leeds United.
Rudy Austin, could be set to play his last game for Leeds United.

Leeds United bring the curtain down on another turbulent season at Elland Road when they host Rotherham United in a Yorkshire derby on Saturday.

It could be a day of fond and not so fond farewells with so much uncertainty surrounding the club about which players are staying and who will be in charge next season on and off the pitch.

There has rarely been a dull moment at the club in the 2014-15 season with the only constant being that Leeds have never looked like challenging for promotion and will end up once again in the lower half of the Sky Bet championship table.

A last hurrah will now be sought to reward long suffering fans who have stuck by the club in good numbers again despite some of the poor fare on offer.

At least those supporters who ventured south to Hillsborough were given some cheer last Saturday with United gaining some small revenge for the mauling they received at the hands of Sheffield Wednesday at the ground last season.

A 2-1 victory was achieved despite giving away yet another penalty with Charlie Taylor scoring his second goal in a Leeds shirt and striker Steve Morison on target for the second week running. What goal drought indeed!

But how many of those players who earned the three points will still be in a Leeds shirt next season will be interesting. Rudy Austin for one as his contract ends next month.

And what of the future of the six players who suddenly declared themselves injured the previous week and were not involved at Hillsborough? Surely, with the possible exception of goalkeeper Marco Silvestri, they would find it hard to play for the team if Neil Redfearn remains in charge.

But with still no official word on Redfearn’s future it is looking increasingly doubtful that he will be picking the team come next August with Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink now being linked with the head coach job after taking Burton to promotion.

Redfearn will be in charge for the Rotherham game, but beyond that no-one is being told. His contract also ends in the summer and he has spoken about his qualifications to be allowed to carry on the work he has started.

He said: “With where the club is and with the talent we’ve got coming through the academy – which has been the fruits of all the academy staff, not just me; everybody that’s been involved – I’d say I’m in the best place (as head coach) to develop that and harness that.

“Now if that opinion’s not shared, that’s no problem. That’s football. But then I’ll have to have a real, long hard think about what’s right for me.

“I want this club to be mobile. My voice needs to be heard, my experience needs to be listened to and then we need to get our heads together. We need to agree on things. If we do that we’ve got a great chance of getting out of this division.”

Fans will be looking for clues as to who is leaving after Saturday’s game with off field matters again likely to take more attention than what actually happens on the pitch.

The potential attendance of owner Massimo Cellino is also likely to bring much publicity.

Cellino has been given permission by the Football League to attend United’s final game of the season although his ban does not expire until a day later, but he can only be there as a spectator.

He is still deciding whether to be there, but may be met with fans’ protests at the handling of Redfearn and his suspended assistant Steve Thompson.