Live updates

Cellino ban extended until May

Leeds United have announced that Massimo Cellino's ban has been extended until 3 May 2015.

Cellino ban extended to 3 May Credit: Press Association

The Italian was originally suspended until 10 April but he had pledged not to return to the club as he tried to clear his name as a private citizen.

A statement on the Leeds United website said:

The Football League, Leeds United and Massimo Cellino have settled the outstanding disciplinary proceedings relating to the club's non disclosure of the Italian Court's judgement regarding Mr Cellino as required under League regulations. The club and Mr Cellino have decided in the interests of the club, its players and supporters not to contest this charge. As a result, Mr Cellino's period of disqualification as a 'relevant person', as defined by the regulations, has now been extended from April 10 until May 3, the day after the conclusion of the 2014/15 league season. Mr Cellino's right to challenge the decision of the Professional Conduct Committee under Football Association Rule K is unaffected by this settlement.

– Leeds United

Advertisement

Leeds fans group hoping to meet Russell Crowe to discuss bid for club

The Leeds Fans LLP group has said it hopes to meet actor Russell Crowe in April to discuss the club's future ownership.

Hollywood star Crowe prompted speculation he may be ready to make a bid for Leeds recently, when he asked his 1.6million Twitter followers whether he should buy the club.

David and Christine spoke to Dylan Thwaites from Leeds Fans LLP:

Leeds United fan group hope to meet Hollywood star over bid for club

The Leeds Fans LLP group has said it hopes to meet actor Russell Crowe in April to discuss the club's future ownership.

Crowe has been linked with a bid for Leeds United Credit: Press Association

Hollywood star Crowe prompted speculation he may be ready to make a bid for Leeds recently, when he asked his 1.6million Twitter followers whether he should buy the club.

The 50-year-old has been a lifelong fan of the Whites, and Leeds Fans LLP said in a statement:

Russell is back in the UK next month and we will try to get a face to face to see if we can get something more concrete from him.

– Leeds Fans LLP

Leeds LLP made contact with Crowe, who asked the group to watch a six-episode show of the work he has done as co-owner of NRL side South Sydney Rabbitohs.

Crowe is currently the co-owner of the Sydney Rabbitohs Credit: Press Association

Were Crowe, the man who played Maximus in Gladiator, to actively pursue involvement with an investment, he could use the LLP group as a vehicle.

LLP is limited liability partnership which will invite Leeds supporters to become partners by buying stakes worth £100. A maximum of 100,000 stakes are to be made available with fans able to buy up to 1,000, with each stake worth one vote.

Advertisement

Is Hollywood superstar Russell Crowe on the verge of buying Leeds United?

Russell Crowe has asked his followers opinion after he was asked on Twitter if he should buy Leeds United.

Could Russell Crowe launch a bid for Leeds United? Credit: Press Association

Crowe is a self confessed Leeds United supporter and with owner Massimo Cellino currently banned from being a director of the club, could the Gladiator star throw his hat in the reing and buy the club?

Sorry, this content isn't available on your device.

In an exchange with the Leeds Fans LLP, a group "supporting fan ownership" of the club, Crowe laid out a plan based on his ownership of South Sydney.

While he did not say that system would translate exactly to Leeds, Crowe said any move would have to be based on a "singular vision" aimed towards creating "success on the field".

Leeds United chairman statement on Cellino

Massimo Cellino has made a decision to separately, and in his own name, challenge the Football League’s decision on the Appeal Hearing of January 15 to reject his appeal and challenge its correctness in law. Subsequent to the Appeal Hearing on January 15, he has abided by the FL rulings on disqualification and has also disposed of any personal ‘interests’ in Eleonora Immobiliare S.P.A and Eleonora Sport Ltd (the majority shareholder of LUFC).

Massimo Cellino is taking this independent action so that LUFC is seen to be fully compliant with the Football League Rules and thus help the football club avoid any sanctions. LUFC are optimistic as to the outcome of the Disciplinary Panel Hearing and of the Rule K Hearing.

– Andrew Umbers, Leeds United Chairman

Cellino: "I'm not returning to Leeds in April"

Leeds owner Massimo Cellino has announced he will not return to the club when his Football League ban ends in April.

Credit: Press Association

Instead, the Italian, who was disqualified in January from having anything to do with the running of the Sky Bet Championship outfit until April 10, will fight to clear his name as an independent citizen.

At the time, the 58-year-old indicated he intended to return to Elland Road when his disqualification period ended.

I have considered in the best interests of the club to postpone any release of my true thoughts and conclusion in relation to the 79 days disqualification verdict of the Football League and it was for not unsettling the harmony of the team in a period of key league tournament matches that I have measured to reveal my decision only today, because the qualification for the 2016 Championship is by now achieved.

For the reason above said, at first I suggested that my intention was to resume in April the office of President of Leeds United Football Club after expiration of the disqualification term.

I will not do so and I had actually decided not to do so in January already, soon after the confirmation by the Football League of its verdict.

I wish to point out that I have immediately complied with all the requests of the Football League and, for such purposes, I instructed my consultants to arrange for all required actions in order to ensure my prompt exit from any management responsibility in the club. After a due process, I have also sold – with a clear harm to my interests – a minority stake in the club, so that in no way I could be prevented from freely acting as an independent citizen and individual before any authority.

My decision has developed because I have realised that about one year ago I had been admitted as President of the club when the latter was very close to insolvency. Only after my restructuring activities and the material funding by the new corporate member I found myself expelled from the club on the basis of interpretation and immediate application of an Italian measure that, although in Italy is ineffective and subject to reasonable cancellation, the Football League has elected to enforce under its own rules.

Moreover, while I am already ousted, the Football League is now pursuing a new claim against me based on circumstances that do not belong to me and have already been clarified and heavily stigmatized by my lawyers.

All of the above leads me to reconfirm the decision already reached in January so that I may be free of defending myself as any normal citizen, and I will not hesitate to do so before any authority because of my honesty, my commitment and due care to the club for which I have already invested one year of hard work. This is what I am called for also honouring a team that I have loved and for all the support and attachment I have received from fans, players, employees, contractors and professionals who have been close to me and I wish to thank once again.

– Massimo Cellino
Load more updates