Dagnall though the heart for Warnock as it all turns nasty for Neil
Sunday, 13th Jan 2013 09:53
A Chris Dagnall double condemned Leeds United to another defeat on the road but tellingly the first signs that the fans are turning on Neil Warnock were apparent as the Leeds boss was told "it's time to go!"
Since the 4-2 triumph on December 1st at Huddersfield on Warnock's 64th birthday, Leeds recorded their fourth successive defeat on the road and like those performances at Derby, Forest and Hull this was just as shocking.
Managerless Barnskey had endured a wretched week, bottom of the Championship, two potential candidates Sean O'Driscoll and Terry Butcher declining the chance to work at Oakwell and striker Craig Davies bundled off to Bolton in a cut price move.
It could be argued that the hosts were there for the taking and Leeds had a golden opportunity to banish the memory of the previous two visits to Oakwell which saw Leeds slump to humiliating 1-4 and 2-5 defeats.
Despite Warnock's insistence he needs to strengthen, he made seven changes to the side that scraped a draw with a youthful Birmingham City side in the FA Cup Third Round last weekend. After kick off Leeds immediately looked like they were still hit by the virus that decimated the squad in the New Year as the Tykes won a corner.
Up front, Marlon Harewood played like he was in his first flourishes of youth rather than a veteran, linking well with Dagnall. Jim O'Brien tested Kenny, Harewood shot wide and the travelling fans were restless asking "What the **** is going on?" As the script was not going to plan.
Warnock made a double substitution at half-time, Diouf and Norris making way for Green and McCormack. In fairness we did improve slightly, new signing Ross Barkley hit the underside if the bar but the favour swung back into the hosts hands on 62 minutes.
Warmock was later seething about a "leg breaking" challenge on McCormack which referee Pawson ignored, Dagnall stormed into the box and went down under the challenge of Byram and Dagnall stepped up to score his first ever league goal for Barnsley from the spot.
Dagnall doubled his match and career tally as well as Barnsley's lead three minutes later, Harewood slipping the perfect pass through and Dagnall shooting wide of Kenny's right.
There was nothing else for the Leeds fans to write home about and they viciously turned on Warnock, who later admitted he probably would have joined in.
The Leeds boss cut a bizarre spectacle at the press-conference post match, armed with a laptop he talked journalists through the McCormack "leg breaker" but it was a feeble excuse for yet another inept, unacceptable and dire display from his team.
With GFH Capital's Salem Patel tweeting he was "very, very disappointed" us Warnock on the verge of being sacked by Twitter, Warnock appeared to imply the social media network was to blame for his QPR dismissal as R's supremo Tony Fernandes is a prolific tweeter.
A regular accusation levelled at the Leeds boss is he has simply cleared out one bunch of average players with another bunch of average players? I think it goes further than that, I would say that Diouf, Green and Tonge are better than what we had last season and the problem lies in Warnock's long ball tactics where we continue to lump it up to Becchio in the hope someone will pick up a rare flick on.
What of our Argentinian forward? Warnock told Yorkshire Radio post match he felt our top scorer's head wasn't right at Oakwell and he would be "having words" - is this an indicator that Becchio is on the verge of leaving the club?
Lee Peltier was another subject on the post-match moan ins, clearly Warmock's skipper is not a left-back and his continued inclusion on that side of defence has been a significant contributor to our woes this season. Warnock, clearly rattled defended Peltier after the match arguing alternative Adam Drury was ill at home and he thought Peltier was a better selection than Aidy White.
So where do we go from here? In December after the Derby defeat I questioned the logic of allowing Warnock to spend big in January, if he was planning on retiring at the end of the season and as far as I am aware he still is. It is unlikely he will achieve his eighth promotion with us so there will be no lure of postponing drawing his pension to have a swansong in the Premiership.
On December 21st GFH Capital publically said Warnock was a condition of the deal and effectively he was their man, dismissing rumours that they would bring in their own manager. Whether or not the last three weeks has changed this view only they know.
Although it would be relatively cheap in comparison to some of the managerial compensation bills we have committed to in recent times, i would only give Warnock and his staff the push now if our next manager is available now and it must be a long term appointment rather than another, hopeful short term fix!
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