Yeboah professes his love for Leeds

Click to follow
The Independent Online
Tony Yeboah gave his first hat-trick match ball pride of place in his new home and told the Leeds fans desperate to see him in a white shirt next season: "I love it here." The 28-year-old Ghanaian showed exactly why Eintracht Frankfurt are so keen to have him back and the Elland Road club so keen to keep him by destroying Ipswich on Wednesday with three goals, described by Howard Wilkinson as "world-class".

And while Yeboah is not prepared to pledge his future to the West Yorkshire side yet - both club and player have an option next January over whether he will stay at Leeds for a further two years - 10 goals in as many games have made him a happy man. "The papers always want to speculate but it doesn't bother me," Yeboah, now Leeds' top scorer this season, said.

He used his pace and power to steer his side to a 4-0 win and grab the first Premiership hat-trick for the club since Rod Wallace at Coventry on the final day of the 1992/93 season.

"I have a contract up to January and I want to concentrate on playing for Leeds. I'm very happy here but we'll have to wait and see. At this stage I can't say I'll stay here for three years. It all depends on whether they want to keep me and then we'll have to see. But I like it very much at Leeds. The people are very friendly and the fans are very good. I love it here. Not having a house has been a problem for my family but we moved in on Monday so it's not a problem any more."

His off-the-field problems behind him - with the exception of a large dent in his new Renault Laguna he discovered as he went into the car park after the game - Yeboah is delighted with his first three months in England. "I think I've started very well but now I have to concentrate on improving," he said. "Scoring 10 goals in 10 games isn't the end and now I have to prove that I can score more - and I think I can. The players are starting to get to know my game now. You could see on Wednesday that we're starting to understand each other very well. We've begun to know each other and the better we know each other the more passes and chances I will get and hopefully the more I'll score. It's not easy getting used to English football. It's all about determination but I'm determined to prove I can make it."

Yeboah's dedication to the Elland Road cause - and the growing possibility of a Uefa Cup campaign next term - has been shown by his decision to miss Ghana's African Nations' Cup qualifier with Sierra Leone on Sunday and play against Liverpool instead. Yeboah added: "I'm very happy. When you score a lot of goals it's very good for the team. Now we're looking towards Europe and we've shown we've got the sort of players who would do well in the Uefa Cup. We've got players who can keep the ball and can pass it. Gary McAllister and Gary Speed are very good players and now you've seen every player prove their worth."

Blackburn's imminent capture of the Premiership title is acting as a magnet for young talent to the detriment of local lads. Promising youngsters, who might have beat a path to Manchester United's door, are now heading for Ewood Park.

"It is an astonishing development," Blackburn's schools representative Mike Hodkinson said. "Everything has changed. The club now has immense pulling power. I know that this year boys are coming from all corners of Britain as well as the Republic of Ireland. It's great for the club but bad for local lads. Unless they're exceptional they do not get a look in.

"It's the same at the club's School of Excellence. We now have boys there from places like Manchester and West Yorkshire."

Comments