Leeds United 1 Doncaster Rovers 2
Brian McDermott is eagerly awaiting the outcome of today’s appeal by Massimo Cellino against the Italian’s failure to pass the Football League’s directors and owners test.
The beleaguered Leeds manager saw his team suffer a fifth defeat in six games as Doncaster cashed in on the financial crisis which left Leeds players agreeing to defer half last month’s wages until next week as they claimed victory at Elland Road.
McDermott, who sees today’s verdict as vital to the club’s future, said: “The big picture is that Massimo has his appeal heard today which is a very important day for this club. Forget about me – it is all about what is right for Leeds United going forward.
“We need this ownership issue sorted out as of yesterday because it has been a very difficult few months. I am not looking for excuses.
“I spoke to the players on Friday about the wages situation and it wasn’t an easy day but an agreement was reached.”
McDermott added: “We were in the top six around Christmas and what has happened since is frightening.
“Our first-half performance was embarrassing. It was just horrible to watch. The two halves were as different as night and day. The first half was shocking but we got the goal quite early in the second half and there was a big improvement but we can’t go two goals down before starting to play.”
Doncaster gained their first win over their Yorkshire rivals in eight attempts as David Cotterill and Billy Sharp put Rovers two goals up in the first half.
Leeds then raised their game and captain Ross McCormack nodded in his 28th goal of the season. A free-kick was headed on by Matt Smith for McCormack to head his fourth in as many games.
Leeds fans staged a mini demonstration against owners Gulf Finance House 20 minutes into the game by turning round and chanting: “Turn your backs on GFH.”
Three minutes later Doncaster were ahead. Cotterill’s corner was headed out by defender Sam Byram to Robbie Wellens, who laid the ball off for Cotterill to fire past Jack Butland from 15 angled yards.
The lead was doubled in first-half time added on. Byram failed to get the ball away from just inside the penalty box, leaving Sharp to plant the ball past the stranded Butland with ease.