As Terry Venables’ reign as coach of Leeds lurches from bad to worse, the beleaguered coach has admitted that he is becoming accustomed to receiving verbal abuse from supporters.
Last night’s home 2-1 defeat to Malaga which saw Leeds knocked out of the UEFA Cup, represented a fresh nadir for the under-fire coach and, as has become custom at Elland Road in recent weeks, the defeat was accompanied by chants for Venables to resign.
‘I’ve been aware of that (the chanting) for a long time – I’m not deaf – but I keep going,’ said Venables. ‘It has no effect at the moment; it’s just become a way of life really. It’s been like it for a while, and I’ve got used to it.
‘It’s not pleasant. But I’ve got used to it and I’m a professional – and I will maintain that stance.’
At one stage, an angry Leeds fan ran onto the pitch to remoinstrate with Venables, before being led away by security guards.
‘I saw the guy out of the cornner of my eye,’ confirmed Venables. ‘There was a kerfuffle and I saw the security guys holding back a young lad.’
To further compound Venables’ woes, Michael Bridges ruptured his Achilles tendon in an injury that could see the 24-year-old out for the rest of the season.
‘It’s bad; it doesn’t look good at all,’ admmitted Venables. ‘I just had a quick word with him as he came off and he just said he felt something snap.
‘The Achilles injury often feels like someone has kicked you, and you look round and you see there’s no one there.’