Leeds fans plan Bates protest

Image: Ken Bates: Leeds fans to protest against his ownership of the club

Leeds United fans are planning a protest against Ken Bates' ownership of the club on Thursday.

United supporters upset by decision to sell captain Howson

Leeds United fans are planning a protest against Ken Bates' ownership of the club on Thursday. A group of Whites followers are expected to gather by the Billy Bremner statue at Elland Road to hold a peaceful protest against the Bates regime. A website - Bates-out.com - has also been set up to urge supporters to make their point to the Leeds chairman. The move is prompted by the club's decision to accept an offer from Norwich City for captain Jonny Howson. Howson is preparing to hold talks with the Canaries about a move to Carrow Road with personal terms and a medical the only obstacles between him and a transfer to the Premier League club. The midfielder is currently sidelined with a knee injury but he is out of contract in the summer. Confirmation of Norwich's successful bid sparked a furious reaction among Leeds supporters who commented in their hundreds when Sky Sports revealed news of the imminent deal. In a statement, Leeds said: "The club reluctantly accepted the offer on the basis that the player only has six months of his current contract remaining and has expressed a desire that he would like to play Premier League football at the earliest opportunity. "The club has been in discussions with the player about a new contract for more than 12 months but he has been steadfast in his position that he would like the opportunity to play Premier League football and on that basis Jonny hasn't felt in a position to commit himself to Leeds United." Organisers of the protest outside the club's ground are urging fans to wear pre-2005 scarves and shirts to mark the period before Bates took control at Elland Road. Leeds are currently 11th in the Championship after an indifferent run of form with Bates publicly challenging manager Simon Grayson to achieve promotion to the Premier League this season.

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