Despite not actually having left Leeds, Whites shot stopper Andy Lonergan is back.
Let me explain…………
The 34-year-old was all set to move to Sunderland on Wednesday afternoon before the deal broke down allegedly between the two clubs.
With Felix Wiedwald firmly established as Thomas Christiansen’s number one since his summer arrival from Werder Bremen, Lonergan was granted permission to leave Elland Road with the plan to promote one of the academy keepers in the first team as back-up instead of scouring the transfer market.
Bailey Peacock-Farrell and Kamil Miazek were the two of the mooted names set to be in line to become the new number two but Lonergan’s representatives have claimed that the deadline day deal collapse occurred because of a breakdown between both Leeds and Sunderland and not that personal terms failed to be thrashed out.
Whatever the truth, the simpletruth of the matter is that Lonergan is back and Christiansen was quick to welcome him back saying: –
“we receive him with open arms. He’s in the squad. We are just happy that he finally decided to be in Leeds.”
However, our Danish/Spanish head coach (yes, he played twice for the Spanish national side and even scored once for them) could not help but have a thinly veiled dig at his opposing manager Chris Coleman and his side by saying: –
“He spoke to their coach and knowing that he had me here he decided to stay with me! Finally, he decided that he preferred to stay with us instead of Sunderland.”
Lonergan will be straight back in the squad for Saturday’s game against Cardiff at Elland Road but it is not the first time the former Preston North End goalie has made a comeback at Leeds.
You will probably remember that he played for the club during the 2011/12 season and made 35 appearances before moving on to Bolton, Fulham and Wolves prior to a return to Elland Road in the summer after the Whites released Rob Green.
However, the big difference this time is that Lonergan never actually left!