|Kewell to face Leeds next season?|
Mon 09th Jul 2012 23:01 by Tim Whelan
Our dearly beloved Harry Kewell could be returning to Elland Road next season…as an opposition player. The 33 year old has decided to return to England and our Championship Blackburn Rovers and Middlesbrough are the main contenders for his signature.
Kewell seems to have spent most of his career making a determined effort to become one of our least popular ex-players of all time. It was the famous Leeds youth system that first gave him the opportunity to play at the highest level, yet he always appeared sullen and ungrateful in interviews, saying that he “didn’t owe Leeds anything” and that he would move on when he felt that he needed to do so.
So even during the good times, he was the one youth team product I thought that we ought to cash in on if the price was right. In 1999 there were stories that Inter Milan were willing to offer huge sums of money for the O’Leary babes who seemed likely to sweep all before them, so with Kewell obviously not being a team player I thought we should take the opportunity to sell him for £10 million or so, and re-invest the cash on someone who would show some commitment to the club.
But as we all know, he was destined to leave Leeds in rather less favourable circumstances. By the summer of 2003 the Ridsdale/O’Leary revolution had gone thoroughly pear-shaped, and the club desperately needed to sell the remaining star players to raise a bit of cash. But Kewell and his agent Bernie Mandaric ruthlessly exploited our situation and the naivety our new chairman Professor McKenzie, and Leeds received only £3Million of the £7Million paid by Liverpool.
The remainder was split between Kewell and Mandaric, with Kewell claiming he was owed £2Million in bonuses and the agent a similar sum in fees for acting for Leeds in various transfer deals over the previous few years. But if the circumstances of this transfer hadn’t riled us enough, his next move almost seemed deliberately calculated to cause the maximum fury amongst Leeds fans.
After five injury-hit seasons at Anfield he was on the move again, and of all places the club he chose to join was Galatasaray, the Turkish outfit who will never be forgiven for the murder of two Leeds fans before the UEFA Cup semi-final of 2000. Kewell was actually in Istanbul with the Leeds team that night, so he can’t possibly have been unaware of the outrage that would be caused by his decision to join the Turkish scumbags.
Three years later he returned to his native Australia to play for A-League side Melbourne Victory, but now he is looking for a move back to England, to be with his wife Sheree Murphy as she looks after her mother, who is seriously ill. Some reports have suggested that Blackburn is his most likely destination, but confusingly their local rag the ‘Lancashire Telegraph’ regards the move as "highly unlikely". Middlesbrough are also chasing his signature and even Swindon Town have been mentioned, although that would involve Kewell dropping down to League One.
Harry, old chap, we sympathise with your mother-in-law’s plight and give her our best wishes, but don’t expect a polite welcome from the crowd when you come back to Elland Road. Your sins have neither been forgotten nor forgiven.
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