Even though the fact that Leeds have been out of the English top division for the past many years, they are still one of the biggest club in the country. The fan following of the club is massive. There have been some great Leeds’ side over the years.
The iconic Leeds side of the 1960s and ‘70s won consistently both at home and abroad under Don Revie are undoubtedly the finest team the club has ever produced. Howard Wilkinson’s Leeds of the early 1990s won one championship, while David O’Leary’s side of the late 90s and early 2000s threatened to achieve big things without ever really fulfilling their potential. In their rich history, many great players have played for the club. In this article, we will have a look at the greatest Leeds United XI of all time.
Considering the loyalty, legacy, impact, success and work rate, here’s the greatest Leeds United XI of all time.
Right wing – Peter Lorimer
Lorimer was an attacking midfielder, generally regarded as having one of the hardest shots in football. From 1984 to 1985 he was club captain of Leeds and holds the record as the club’s youngest ever player and record goalscorer. He was voted into the Greatest Leeds United team of all time.
His shooting aside, he was a superb right winger and his crosses to the Leeds forwards were deadly accurate. However, he will be remembered for his blistering shooting skills in his two periods with Leeds, which resulted in 238 goals in a total of 676 games. Capped 21 times for Scotland Peter also played in Canada, South Africa and Israel, before finally hanging up his scorched boots in the mid 80’s.
Centre midfield – Billy Bremner
The first entry in the greatest Leeds United XI of all time, will always be Billy Bremner. Feisty, rugged and passionate, Billy Bremner was the ideal Leeds captain. He was Revie’s enforcer on the pitch, a commanding midfield conductor who performed fearlessly and acted as an inspiration during the club’s greatest era.
An excellent defender and passer of the ball, he always knew where every one of his team mates were, at any point of the match and played the ball right to their feet. No slouch in front of goal either, he scored 114 times in his 16 years at Leeds.
Scotland recognised his skills in 1965 and made him captain in 1968 and he played 54 times for them. Football League Player of the Year in 1970, he was idolised by the Leeds fans and given grudging respect by everyone in football.
Centre midfield – Johnny Giles
Diminutive, fleet footed and quick-thinking, Giles was the unsung hero of Revie’s Leeds, diligently probing the midfield, snuffing out opposition attacks and building moves. He joined the club from rivals Manchester United in 1963 for a fee of £33,000 and went on to become one of the finest signings in English football history.
Johnny Giles was the man who commandeered the midfield alongside Billy Bremner during the 60’s and 70’s and it’s not a coincidence that they both find themselves in this squad together.
He was another combative player who switched from the wing to the middle through Revie’s guidance. A fantastic player and arguably one of the best we’ve ever seen in England.
Left wing – Eddie Gray
Eddie Gray was perhaps the most talented footballer Leeds United ever had. The winger spent his entire playing career at Elland Road, making his debut in 1966.
The highlight of his Leeds career was his legendary goal against Burnley, when he flicked and backheeled his way past numerous opposing players to get into a scoring position, before putting the ball in the back of the net.
In 2000, Gray was voted as the third Greatest Leeds United player of all time, surpassed only by his club captain, Billy Bremner and John Charles. He was also voted into the greatest Leeds United XI of all time.