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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Tom Beattie

Leeds United relegation blamed on "signing half the USMNT" in brutal assessment

An EFL chairman has given his brutal take on the primary reason why Leeds United were relegated from the Premier League last term.

The inquests into the Yorkshire outfit's struggles in the top flight during 2022/23 will likely go on long into the summer after the Elland Road side fought unsuccessfully to beat the drop. Now, Peterborough United owner Darragh MacAnthony has blamed Leeds' misfortunes on a specific aspect of the club's transfer strategy.

Former head coach Jesse Marsch brought in three compatriots last summer in the form of with USMNT stars Brenden Aaronson, Tyler Adams and Weston McKennie. With the two latter names having arrived from perennial Champions League sides RB Leipzig and Juventus, expectations were high that they could help lead the side to safety.

However, the signings of the trio of US internationals would be to no avail, with Leeds' two-year stay in the English top flight coming to an end with a humbling 4-1 final day home defeat against Tottenham. Speaking on TalkSport, the Posh owner brutally blamed the relegation on the decision to sign the three stars in question.

While also laying the blame on the former director of football Victor Orta, MacAnthony said: “Yes, they got relegated because they signed half the US Men’s National Team who weren’t very good and a director of football who was there prior, who if he was made of chocolate he would eat himself.

"Lots of things have probably happened that Andrea [Radrizzani, Leeds chairman] would regret."

Ex-manager Marsch was dismissed back in February with Leeds sitting outside the relegation zone in 17th place. However, a dismal run under his successors Javi Gracia and Sam Allardyce sealed their fate and the Whites ultimately finished second from bottom.

Allardyce, who has also since departed Elland Road, said following the club's relegation: "It's very sad for the club getting relegated after working so hard to get back in the Premier League for so long. The rebuild has to be something that is particularly well-planned by everybody for next season."

The USMNT trio that MacAnthony referred to could all leave the club this summer, with Aaronson's future undecided due to a relegation clause in his contract, while Adams could also be heading for the exit door. McKennie, who was only on loan from Juventus, has since returned to his parent club.

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