Leeds United Stories, Vol. 1

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three-year deal confirmed for mathieu smith; more on adryan & antenucci to leeds

three-year deal confirmed for mathieu smith; more on adryan & antenucci to leeds


Leeds United have done the only decent, sensible and honourable thing and signed Mathieu Smith to a new three-year contract.

To remove any doubt about the club’s intentions towards half-French colossal colossus, Smith is picture on the official Twitter account, pen in hand, contract on table, his enormous paw sensibly covering up the ‘salary’ section of his new deal.

We are delighted to confirm that Matt Smith has committed his future to the club by signing a new 3-year deal #lufc pic.twitter.com/a1fJmVkuiY

— Leeds United FC (@LUFC) August 18, 2014

Smith has struggled to find a place in Hockaday and Cellino’s new look Leeds line-up, with Doukara, Ajose and Sharp arriving and Morison, Hunt and Poleon not shifting, all leaving it hard to make room for almost two metres of well-educated hustle.

Twelve league goals and six assists last season were too good a return to let Smith leave without some sort of reward, however, and in my report on the win over Middlesbrough on Saturday I indulged in some Chapman and Davison/Shutt/Wallace style reverie about a possible Smith and Sharp forward pairing.

The conversation is still as much about additions as it is about player-retention at the moment; Cellino has said he wants another ‘five or six more in,’ keeping the speculation about 20-year old Brazilian Adryan very much alive.

The latest from Italy is that the young playmaker, who belongs to Flamengo but was loaned to Cagliari under Cellino, is not “arriving in Leeds” as said at lunchtime; his agent says “I’m in Brazil and Adryan is in Italy.” Said agent, a Mr Reinaldo Pitta, did confirm talks are happening, though, and added this tempting morsel about Adryan’s own wishes: “If we are talking [to Leeds] it’s clear that he would like to play there!”

Also from Emanuele Giulianelli is an update on striker Mirco Antenucci, who is expected to be creating more competition for Matt Smith at Leeds very soon; after captaining Ternana in the Coppa Italia last night, he thanked the fans for “all these fantastic emotions,” adding: “Your chants gave me the creeps!”

Something might be lost in translation, there.