Leeds United’s long-awaited takeover by 49ers Enterprises was finally confirmed yesterday evening following approval by the EFL, and new Whites chairman Paraag Marathe has wasted no time in declaring his intentions in his new role.
As is to be expected for a side who faced relegation from the Premier League last season, promotion back into the top-flight is the priority for Leeds right now – and Marathe knows it.
He also believes that a return to England’s top division will benefit not only his newly-owned side but the league itself, which suffers without a club of Leeds’ standing within it.
Speaking to The Athletic, Marathe said: “The Premier League needs Leeds. Call it whatever you want.
“The way we play. The tenacity in which we play. Our history. The Premier League needs us. They know that they need us because we make the league more special.
“There is something different about Leeds. It is not like these other clubs. A lot of these clubs have had great success. Better success than we have had. But we have something that they do not have.
“There is a movement beneath the surface, and I want to be a part of that movement and I cannot wait to see what that becomes in five, ten years.”
Fortunately for Leeds supporters this is not just bluster from Marathe, as the 49ers appear – at least initially – to be backing their ambitions of an immediate Premier League return up with action.
The appointment of new manager Daniel Farke, a figure who has twice won the Championship in dominant fashion during his time at Norwich, is a clear statement of intent from the Whites’ new ownership.
The West Yorkshire club are also strengthening during this summer not only in terms of backroom staff but also with on-field personnel – with versatile Chelsea defender Ethan Ampadu reportedly on the verge of joining Farke’s squad less than a day after the 49ers takeover was formally ratified.
And with a busy period of transfer activity still expected at Elland Road, it is still unknown what the Leeds XI will look like when they get their season underway with a home clash against Cardiff City on Sunday 6 August.