Leeds duo refuse to leave
By Paul Higham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Camara and Domi joined Leeds in the summer on season-long loan deals from Lens and Paris St Germain respectively, but were informed they were now surplus to requirements at the debt-ridden club.
With Leeds on the brink of administration and determined to save cash wherever they can, Camara and Domi were told their contracts would be terminated.
But both players have dug their heels in and are staying put as agent Willie Mackay confirmed: "They were asked to sign a paper releasing them from their contract, but they have refused to sign.
"They (Leeds) have gone the wrong way about things.
"There was no negotiating with regard to Zoumana and Didier. The hammer simply came down from Trevor Birch (chief executive).
"Under his instructions, he sent in (caretaker manager) Eddie Gray and secretary Ian Silvester to ask them to sign these papers releasing them from their contracts.
"They refused because at the end of the day, if a club takes a player on loan for a season, then they have him for that season.
"There was no guarantee if they had signed that either Paris St Germain or Lens would have taken them back and paid them.
"I admit that neither player has pulled up trees at Leeds this season, but then who has?
"If we wanted we could take this to the French Football Federation, the Football Association and Fifa if we wanted.
"These are international transfers and they are Leeds United players this year. They have an obligation to pay them like everybody else.
"It's all very messy and it smacks of desperation to me."
The West Yorkshire club have just turned down a £5 million bid from Spurs for key players Paul Robinson and James Milner and have said Alan Smith is not for sale but the two stoppers' refusal to leave could force them into a rethink.
Mackay has dropped a further bombshell on Leeds with the news two of the other loan signings he arranged in the summer, Lamine Sakho and Salomon Olembe, will leave United before the end of the transfer window.
Leeds had been hoping to keep the duo, currently on African Cup of Nations duty with Senegal and Cameroon respectively, but Olembe is poised to join Blackburn before the closure of the transfer window.
Rovers will pick up the remainder of his loan deal, with the utility player having joined from Marseille, as did winger Sakho who is to move to another Premiership club.
"I have lined up deals for both players and they will be moving before the end of the transfer window," confirmed Mackay.
"The only problem is they are both in Tunisia for the African Nations Cup. But I don't see a problem with either deal."
Despite the resistance of Camara and Domi, the rest of the Leeds squad have issued a statement to insist that they are fully behind the club and have not made a decision on the issue of deferring their wages.
The squad say that reports of a dressing room split are false and that they may still be prepared to defer their pay should it be required.
"We wish to make it clear that we are fully behind the club and are working with Trevor Birch and the Professional Footballers Association in the hope of solving the problems," read the players' statement.
"Some of the reports we have read in the newspapers are wrong. We are together as a team and no decision has yet been made one way or the other on whether to defer a percentage of our wages.
"We have said that we will be prepared to support the club, should it be required."