Saturday February 1 2014
Leeds fans protest Cellino

Massimo Cellino’s Leeds United career didn’t get off to a good start, as angry fans barricaded him into Elland Road.

Although the Cagliari patron’s takeover is not yet official, it has been widely reported Cellino was behind the shock dismissal of manager Brian McDermott.

Former Middlesbrough, Portsmouth, Inter and Cagliari defender Gianluca Festa is expected to be the new Coach.

On Friday night Cellino was at Elland Road and crowds of angry supporters blocked the exits in protest, though it’s reported he managed to sneak out.

Cellino is ready to buy out 75 per cent of Leeds United, though the bid still has to be ratified by the Football League.

One of the most colourful figures in Italian football, Cellino is known for his outspoken nature, chain-smoking in the stands and tendency to fire tacticians.

In his 22 years in Sardinia, the President has changed management 36 times for a total 27 managers, as some were fired and recalled.

He lives in Miami and bought Cagliari in May 1992, but looks set to sell up if he is able to buy Leeds.

Cellino’s frustration with Serie A and the local council exploded last year when he spent time in prison accused of fraud for building the Is Arenas stadium using temporary structure permits.

After travelling round Italy for a year, Cagliari recently returned to the Stadio Sant’Elia, but the local council still only allows 5,000 fans in per game because of restructuring work and safety concerns.

It wasn’t his first brush with the law, as Cellino had three different trials for fraud relating to his businesses.


He attempted to buy West Ham United in 2010, but the deal collapsed.