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Leeds takeover completed on December 21, Ken Bates confirms

Merry Christmas! Leeds takeover will be completed by festive season as Bates confirms sale

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UPDATED:

12:07 GMT, 21 November 2012

Leeds owner Ken Bates has announced Bahrain-based investment bank GFH Capital will complete a 100 per cent takeover of the club on December 21.

Bates, 80, who took control of the club just short of eight years ago, confirmed the first part of the takeover had been completed and he will stay on as chairman until the end of the season to help the new owners during a transitional period.

'We have now completed all the negotiations and investigations with GFH and we’ve now completed the first part of the purchase and that happened at 10.30pm last night,' Bates told Yorkshire Radio.

On his way: Ken Bates has confirmed he has sold Leeds United to Bahrain-based investment bank GFH Capital

On his way: Ken Bates has confirmed he has sold Leeds United to Bahrain-based investment bank GFH Capital

'Put briefly, they’re taking over 100 per cent of the club, as I say the first part was completed at 10.30pm last night and it will be totally completed on December 21.

'Meanwhile there’s a transitional period in which they get to know more about the club.'

Bates also confirmed that he will be taking on a new role as club president at the end of the season, while one GFH representative, David Haigh, would be joining the club’s board immediately, with three more new directors in place before Christmas.

Looking ahead: Leeds manager Neil Warnock will soon have new bosses at Elland Road

Looking ahead: Leeds manager Neil Warnock will soon have new bosses at Elland Road

Football League blog

David Haigh, Deputy CEO, GFH Capital Limited said: 'After a long process of negotiations, spanning Leeds, London, Monaco, Dubai and Bahrain, it gives us great pride today, to have completed the deal for Leeds United.

'A brief but important transitional period now begins in terms of the changeover of ownership: we have today injected further funds into the club and now we look to the future and start the exciting journey to take Leeds United FC back into a prime position in English football once again.

'From a Leeds family myself and a supporter of The Whites since childhood, I know that football is at the very heart of the people of Leeds and the wider community.

'We want to thank all the fans in UK and around the world for their patience and support while the negotiations have been taking place. Lets now march on together, taking the club back to the Premier League as soon as possible.'

Bates added: “Quite simply they (GFH)
will be providing additional working capital for the club and they are
also providing funds to strengthen the team.

'Infact there's already been a small injection this morning as far as working capital is concerned.

High hopes: Leeds' new owners want to club to secure a return to the Premier League

High hopes: Leeds' new owners want to club to secure a return to the Premier League

'Nothing has changed, I will continue as chairman until the end of the season when I look forward to handing over to my successor and become president and sitting back perhaps, taking a bit more time off and enjoying what has been eight years of very hard work.

'That's what (my wife) Susannah and I chose when we came in, so that's what we've got on with.

'Neil Warnock will continue as manager, obviously with more support than the present owners have been able to give and we look forward to a smooth transition.

'I can say although the negotiations have taken a very long time, the benefit of that is that, unlike some overseas owners, who have gone in blind like a bull in a china shop and made a complete mess of the club after taking over, this six-month courtship if you like, for want of a better phrase, has given them (GFH) enough opportunities to see how Leeds United works.

'What the advantages and disdavantages are, the strengths and weaknesses, what needs to be done and what needs to be supported.

'So you can look for a more Manchester United-type transition than we've seen at Blackburn, Portsmouth and other less fortunate clubs.'

England beaten by Wwst Indies in Super Eights

Gayle leads England a merry dance as Windies claim Super Eights victory

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UPDATED:

18:08 GMT, 27 September 2012

ICC World Twenty20 champions England
suffered a second successive setback as they began their Super Eight
campaign with a 15-run defeat against West Indies at Pallekele.

Eoin Morgan (71no) and Alex Hales
(68) did their best to rescue an unlikely victory, in pursuit of 179 for
five. But in the end, with 23 required off Marlon Samuels' final over,
England had left themselves with just too much to do.

West Indies' bowler Chris Gayle dances

West Indies' bowler Chris Gayle dances

Lord of the dance: Chris Gayle celebrates dismissal of England's Jonny Bairstow

Lord of the dance: Chris Gayle celebrates dismissal of England's Jos Buttler
England v West Indies

England: C Kieswetter (wkt), AD Hales, LJ Wright, EJG Morgan, JM Bairstow, JC Buttler, SR Patel, SCJ Broad (capt), GP Swann, ST Finn, JW Dernbach

West Indies: J Charles, CH Gayle, MN Samuels, DJ Bravo, KA Pollard, D Ramdin (wkt), AD Russell, DJG Sammy (capt), SP Narine, R Rampaul, S Badree

Umpires: S Davis (Aus) and A Rauf (Pak)

Third umpire: A Dar (Pak)

Match referee: J Srinath (Ind)

Click here to read the full scorecard

England wrote off their heaviest loss, and lowest total, in this sprint format against India in Colombo on Sunday as a blip.

On thursday night, there was a much better performance but more disappointment too after they fell short of a tough but achievable target with 164 for four on a decent pitch.

Johnson Charles (84) and Chris Gayle (58) both clubbed half-centuries, after West Indies won the toss; then England's reply suffered a telling initial stumble, before opener Hales and back-to-form Morgan kept them in the contest with a century stand and seven sixes between them.

England's bowlers already knew all about master blaster Gayle, but might have been a little more surprised by his opening partner Charles.

After a stand of 103, Gayle was first to go. But 23-year-old St Lucian Charles, without a century in any form of professional cricket, stayed the course to record his maiden Twenty20 international 50.

On the attacK: Gayle hits a four off England's Steven Finn

On the attacK: Gayle hits a four off England's Steven Finn

Safe hands: Finn takes a catch to dismiss West Indies' Chris Gayle

Safe hands: Finn takes a catch to dismiss West Indies' Chris Gayle

England, by contrast, began their reply
by losing two wickets for no runs in the first three balls to Ravi
Rampaul – and even though Hales responded with 50 containing five fours
and two sixes, and Morgan reached his half-century in a tournament
joint-record 25 balls, it was never going to be quite enough.

Charles had earlier hit 10 fours and three sixes, before mistiming another attempted big hit to long-on off Jade Dernbach.

Gayle predictably first signalled his intent with three fours in one over from Dernbach.

Up for it: West indies bowler Ravi Rampaul (centre) celebrates the dismisal of Craig Kieswetter

Up for it: West indies bowler Ravi Rampaul (centre) celebrates the dismisal of Craig Kieswetter

Impressive: Eoin Morgan plundered 71

Impressive: Eoin Morgan plundered 71

The powerplay yielded a near par 47, but without loss, and that proved to be a platform for the Windies openers to up the ante.

Gayle had one minor moment of fortune on 29 when a wrong-footed Morgan,
perhaps losing the ball in the bright floodlights, found himself
over-committed as the big left-hander pulled Samit Patel high to the
boundary.

The Irishman might have had a chance of holding an important catch, had
he been able to retreat to the fence, but instead saw the first of three
sixes in the over sail over his head.

Those three sixes and six fours took Gayle past 50 in only 29 balls, and the West Indies were in three figures in the 11th over.

Close call: Morgan makes his ground under pressure from Ravi Rampaul

Close call: Morgan makes his ground under pressure from Ravi Rampaul

Clean bowled: England's Alex Hales is dismissed by Marlon Samuel

Clean bowled: England's Alex Hales is dismissed by Marlon Samuel

England should have had a much-needed breakthrough when Steven Finn put down Charles on 39 off Graeme Swann at long-off.

But England would doubtless have swapped that for what happened off the
very next ball, Finn holding his nerve this time to cling on at long-on
and see the back of Gayle.

England celebrated appropriately, and soon had number three Samuels
cheaply too – caught at point by Morgan as Stuart Broad interrupted the
Windies' flow with a wicket-maiden.

Charles was still at large, but England recalled Finn early to test
Kieron Pollard with pace – a move that worked instantly, as the big
hitter skied a catch to the cover boundary from the first ball of the
over to go for just a single.

Watching brief: The England dug out

Watching brief: The England dug out

The openers apart, only Dwayne Bravo and Andre Russell managed
double-figures – and their last-over assault on Dernbach helped to
produce 15 runs, to make the Windies marginal favourites at the
interval.

Three balls after it, their position had strengthened somewhat.

Rampaul's double-wicket maiden saw Craig Kieswetter lob a short ball to
cover for a second-ball duck, and Luke Wright edge some extra bounce to
slip to put the seamer on a hat-trick.

Jonny Bairstow, promoted ahead of Morgan, survived that early crisis.

Hales escaped a 'double-play' on 31 – when he should have been stumped
off Samuel Badree, and then run out had a direct hit come in from short
fine-leg as he stole a bye.

Bairstow's innings was a particular struggle, ending when he finally hit
one well enough down the ground off Gayle but was very well-caught by
Pollard running round from long-on.

Hales and Morgan joined forces with little realistic hope of a
successful chase but had enough firepower to make the Windies sweat
right to the end.

Ajax 0 Man Utd 2: Ashley Young and Javier Hernandez get Europa League campaign up and running

Ajax 0 Man Utd 2: Young and Hernandez get Europa League campaign up and running

Manchester United got their inaugural Europa League campaign off to the perfect start with a convincing 2-0 victory in Holland.

After a scrappy first half, the visitors asserted their authority and took the lead through Ashley Young's clinical finish in the 59th minute.

The winger, who recently returned from a two-month lay-off, led the home defence a merry dance before coolly slotting home from inside the box.

With five minutes remaining, it was up to Mexican hitman Chicharito to seal a pleasing victory in the first match of the two-legged tie after neat combination play with Wayne Rooney.

More follows.

Clinical: Ashley Young fires his shot past Vurnon Anita and into the Ajax net

Clinical: Ashley Young fires his shot beyond Vurnon Anita and into the Ajax net

MATCH FACTS

Ajax: Vermeer, Anita, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Koppers (Boilesen 63), De Jong, Aissati, Eriksen, Ozbiliz (Lukoki 80), Bulykin (Van Rhijn 60), Sulejmani. Subs not used: Cillessen, Blind, Lodeiro, Serero.

Booked: De Jong, Alderweireld.

Man Utd: De Gea, Jones, Ferdinand, Evans, Fabio Da Silva, Nani (Welbeck 86), Carrick, Cleverley (Scholes 60), Young (Valencia 76), Rooney, Hernandez. Subs not used: Amos, Smalling, Park, Pogba.

Booked: Fabio.

Scorer: Young 59, Hernandez 85.

Referee: Gianluca Rocchi (Italy).

Up and running: Manchester United got their Europa League campaign off to the perfect start in Amsterdam

Up and running: Manchester United got their Europa League campaign off to the perfect start in Amsterdam

High and wide: Toby Alderweireld forces Wayne Rooney to blast a shot off target

High and wide: Toby Alderweireld forces Wayne Rooney to blast a shot off target

Dangerman: Michael Carrick tracks Danish sensation Christian Eriksen

Dangerman: Michael Carrick tracks Danish sensation Christian Eriksen

Aerial battle: Siem de Jong outjumps the Manchester United rearguard

Aerial battle: Siem de Jong outjumps the Manchester United rearguard

Sent sprawling: Javier Hernandez feels the force of Kenneth Vermeer's challenge

Sent sprawling: Javier Hernandez feels the force of Kenneth Vermeer's challenge

Close attention: Rio Ferdinand fouls Miralem Sulejmani

Close attention: Rio Ferdinand fouls Miralem Sulejmani