Leeds United kept on tenterhooks over ‘Spygate’ as Football League ‘require further exploration’

Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa (Picture: Simon Hulme).
Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa (Picture: Simon Hulme).
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LEEDS UNITED will have to wait to discover their fate over ‘Spygate’ after the Football League decided further enquiries were needed into the saga.

The governing body’s board – minus representatives from the Championship – met on Thursday for the first time since head coach Marcelo Bielsa had admitted to sending a member of his staff to watch opponents Derby County train at their Moor Farm complex on January 10.

Deliberations ran over into Friday as to whether Leeds and Bielsa should face charges.

A verdict was expected at the end of the board meeting, but instead the League announced that no decision would be taken until additional investigation had been undertaken.

It means the matter will now drag on towards the end of the season.

A League statement read: “At its meeting on Friday afternoon, the EFL Board (excluding representatives of the Championship) considered the matter of the incident in the vicinity of Derby County’s training ground on Thursday, January 10.

“Following a comprehensive review of all available evidence, it was determined that there remain a number of areas that require further exploration and clarification and these investigations will take place at the earliest opportunity.

“An update on this matter will be provided following receipt and analysis of those subsequent enquiries and until this point no further comment will be made.”

Derby, who lost 2-0 at Elland Road just 24 hours after Bielsa’s member of staff had been spotted at Moor Farm, formally complained to the League.

A letter signed by 11 of Leeds’s Championship rivals was then sent to the governing body, in which they demanded a full inquiry and asking for details of the scouting trips sanctioned by Bielsa.

Three Championship directors are on the League board – Bristol City’s Mark Ashton, Nigel Howe and Brentford’s Cliff Crown – but were excluded from deliberations over ‘Spygate’.