Thorp Arch academy awarded Category One status by Premier League

08 Jul 2020 07:17 am, by Ellandback1

Good Morning. It's Wednesday 8th July, and here are the latest headlines from Elland Road...

Brentford reduce deficit to two points

Brentford came from behind with two goals in the last 15 minutes to heavily dent Lee Bowyer's Charlton Athletics chances of avoiding relegation. Charlton took the lead on eight minutes, courtesy of a Macauley Bonne's header, and maintained that lead until the final quarter when Benrahma was adjudged to be fouled in the 18 yard box. The referee hesitated before pointing at the spot. The Algerian International stepped up himself to level the game.

For the next 10 minutes the Bees laid siege at Dillon Phillips goal, and were rewarded five minutes from time when former Barnsley centre back Ethan Pinnock headed home his second goal of the season. The West London Club have now recorded their sixth victory in a row. Last night was the first time that the Bees had conceded in these six games. Ollie Watkins is the division top scorer with 23. Benrahma has netted 15 times with eight assists. Mbeumo also has 15 goals to his name and seven assists. All three have a significantly better strike rate than Bamford.

They are now just three points behind from the Whites, but have an impressive +41 goal difference, who must beat Stoke on Thursday to keep the distance respectable. Fulham too are keeping the pressure on. Back to back wins against Birmingham and an impressive victory at the City ground last night leaves the Cottagers five points adrift of Leeds. West Brom too, have hit some form in the last two games having scored seven times dispatching Sheffield Wednesday and Hull. The Baggies face a tricky tie at the Hawthorns this early evening (5pm) against Derby.

I'm sure we'll be praying for a Ram raid!

Thorp Arch academy awarded Category One status by Premier League

The Leeds Utd academy, based at Thorp Arch, has been awarded Category One status by the Premier League for the first time. Earlier this season, the club was audited on the level of investment, facilities, resources, staffing and productivity and clearly impressed the assessors. The Under-23s will go into the national Premier League 2 and be allowed to compete in the EFL Trophy, where League One and League Two clubs compete. More external funding into the set-up at Thorp Arch will also be available. Academy Manager Adam Underwood said:

Despite the Leeds United academy being the fourth most productive system in English football in the past six years, in terms of producing players to compete for first-team football, promotion to a category one status is a landmark day for the club.

We are delighted to receive confirmation of our category one status and the credit must go to the staff who have given everything for the football club. They have brought through some of the best young players in the country and they will now get the opportunity to showcase their abilities at the highest level.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank Victor Orta, Angus Kinnear and especially Andrea Radrizzani for supporting our vision in every way. The investment into the academy has tripled since they joined our club and they are creating a legacy that will help drive the club forward for decades to come.

Chief executive Angus Kinnear added:
The real credit here must go to Adam Underwood and his team. A category one academy was one of our key objectives when we started on this journey and we tasked Adam with delivering this within five years and as a team they have completed the job within three years.

Our academy has always been critical to our club and to be ‘Leeds’ is very important to our supporters. It is at the heart of our DNA, and today’s accolade is an acknowledgement of their efforts, enabling Adam and his staff to continue to produce even more quality footballers in the future.

Bielsa's Pre Match Press Conference

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Byebyegeegee wrote on 08 Jul 2020 03:30 pm

Only fitting that one of the biggest and best supported football clubs in England should have a grade one academy, well done mr Radrizani and staff.

Leeds1000 wrote on 08 Jul 2020 01:49 pm

Nail biting stuff. We wouldn't want it any other way. Keep the lads on their toes.

Great news about Thorpe Arch (Investment has tripled since AR came on board) another big step forward and another soft pat on the back for AR.
If i remember correct, didn't Cellino almost close it down? Wash your own kits and bring packed lunches type thing. Proper football club.

mothbanquet wrote on 08 Jul 2020 01:30 pm

"Ollie Watkins is the division top scorer with 23. Benrahma has netted 15 times with eight assists. Mbeumo also has 15 goals to his name and seven assists. All three have a significantly better strike rate than Bamford."

Sorry EB, but this is a repetition of a lazy and more importantly flawed method of measuring Bamford's effectiveness. I have become more critical of Bamford as the season has gone on, but I try to restrict my criticism to reactions to specific games and will happily praise him when he does well. There have also been examples where he has helped us achieve victory without scoring a goal. I mention this not to make a point about myself (I often contradict myself and am subject to the emotion of a win or loss, which can colour my amateur assessment) but because assessing his performances individually or as a general trend over the season is more difficult to do, requiring more effort to research and time to debate. Simply comparing him to other Player X who scored Y number of goals is quick, easy but offers no insight whatsoever.

All the players listed are different from Bamford, if not in style play then in the way they're used tactically. There are so many values to take into account when comparing these players that I know I'm not even aware of them all. Bielsa can probably recite them, but not I. Because of this, making these comparisons is little different to saying 'a Scania lorry is a better vehicle than a Ferrari because it can pull a heavy container'. The statement is true, but the terms used are so vague it has no meaning. Simply saying that Player X scores more goals than Bamford, therefore he is better, is assuming the only metric used for Bamford's performance is goals scored. It's often said on this very forum that as a number 9, this single statistic is the overriding value that determines a striker's worth. By this logic, going on this season alone, Aleksandar Mitrovic is a better striker than Jamie Vardy and Pierre Emerick Aubamayang. And we all know that isn't the case.

faaip wrote on 08 Jul 2020 12:24 pm

Brentford have moved within 2 points of the auto's ..maybe what EB was referring too

Great to hear of the academy success, gets a lot of negativity here but there are some class footballers coming through.

Fulham are basically 6 points back with 4 to play, I feel that's too much to do to catch us..Bloody should be, we need to lose 3 on the bounce and they'd have to win two to go a point ahead

weasel wrote on 08 Jul 2020 11:57 am

Ellandback1 wrote:
Wed Jul 08, 2020 7:17 am
Ollie Watkins is the division top scorer with 23. Benrahma has netted 15 times with eight assists. Mbeumo also has 15 goals to his name and seven assists. All three have a significantly better strike rate than Bamford.
Don't know why there is the continual knocking of Bamford. Fulham have won 3 matches on the bounce without Mitrovic. Sometimes having a clinical striker isn't the answer. I provided the stats earlier in the season that showed how Nketiah and Bamford both had a similar goals per minute record for us when Nketiah left but how we conceded far more often per minute when Nketiah was on the pitch rather than Bamford. Bamford is an integral part of Bielsa's side and people need to accept that rather than continually getting on his back. Yes Bamford has missed chances, but so have those mentioned, and strike rate is one of those statistics that can be misleading. Similarly people have harped on about him missing 'big chances' but that boils down to the person judging what is a big chance or not. Is it a big chance if it falls on the player's weaker foot for example. If a player scores a goal from what wasn't classed as a big chance does it suddenly become a big chance as the goal was scored? Bielsa and his people have their stats and I dare say they are far more relevant than the stats given to us all for free.