By George Overhill

1st Jun, 2023 | 1:40pm

Andrea Radrizzani accuses The Athletic over Elland Road story as Leeds United chairman claims it is 'none of your business'

Andrea Radrizzani accused The Athletic of trying to turn Leeds United fans against him over a report that he offered to put Elland Road on the line to secure a loan to buy Sampdoria, according to the outlet.

In a bombshell story on Thursday morning (1 June) Phil Hay and Adam Crafton reported that the Whites chairman went behind the backs of 49ers Enterprises and his fellow directors at the West Yorkshire club, co-signing an agreement in principle to put up the stadium as security for a £26million bridging loan in his rescue bid of the Italian side.

In response he claimed it was “none of your business” but did not respond when asked directly about the loan proposal – there is reportedly no charge with Companies House to suggest that it has actually so far been secured against the ground.

The Athletic reports that the chairman’s response when it was put to him was, via a Wednesday night (31 May) email: “You are not well informed as the deal has been done by Gestio Capital.”

Gestio Capital themselves did not respond to a request for comment from The Athletic.

Radrizzani also reportedly said: “What Aser Ventures does with its assets which includes several companies including Leeds United, Greenfield and Elland Road.. it’s none of your business.

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“You can do what you want but you are just trying to put Leeds United fans against myself. It is not nice.”

Hay and Crafton’s report states: “When asked directly whether he had offered Elland Road as security for a loan to buy a different club, which it was pointed out is a matter of great public interest to the club’s supporters, Radrizzani did not, at the point of publication, respond.”


If the report is a concern then the reaction is even worse, as it would not be difficult to categorically state that such an agreement hadn’t been put forward.

And either way, assets such as Leeds United and Elland Road are very much the business of the fans and reporters, especially if they are being put at risk.

After the season they have just witnessed, capped off by a relegation that leaves the short-term future at the club up in the air, and in a week which saw Radrizzani spend most of his time in Italy focused on Sampdoria, the supporters probably don’t need much assistance in being against him.

The summer was supposed to see the well-established Premier League Leeds United he had promised to build move into the hands of the 49ers to begin the long-awaited next chapter of their history.

Instead, it took three days after they were relegated to the Championship before the man still in charge of the club released any public statement about the Whites, which in itself left more questions than answers.

It would be bad enough for Leeds to be left as an afterthought, without a manager or a sporting director and with transfers in and out on the cards, while the chairman spends his time focused on buying another club.

But if he is also prepared to tie the Whites to that other deal for potentially years into the future it would be far worse.

His statement to the fans didn’t provide answers that were already badly needed, and following the latest report it certainly feels like his time at Leeds is up and a deal with the 49ers must be reached urgently.

In other Leeds United news, meanwhile Angus Kinnear has been in talks with potential new managers but can’t move on until a resolution at the top is reached.