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Leeds United chairman responds to Mirco Antenucci rumours, delivers firm stance

Leeds chairman Andrew Umbers has responded to media once more.

Leeds United chairman Andrew Umbers has responded to rumours that Mirco Antenucci is not being selected due to a clause in his contract, according to West Yorkshire Sport.

The 30-year-old Italian is Leeds' top scorer this season but has seen less playing tame in recent months despite returning to the team before the international break.

And reports have suggested the reason behind the development is that Antenucci's contract will be extended if he reaches 12 Championship goals this term.

Umbers, however, has refuted those suggestions and says boss Neil Redfearn is free to play Antenucci whenever he needs to.

West Yorkshire Sport report him as saying: "The rumours are wrong. Mirco Antenucci has always been available for selection and always will be. It is up to Neil whether he plays him or not on the merits of his matchday strategy.

"In the last 15 games, Neil has decided to play alternative strikers in the first team but included Mirco in the squad. Nothing has changed in Mirco's availability to play and that includes this weekend.

"He is part of our short, medium and long term strategy in football. He also loves playing for Leeds United."

Whether the statement will be believed by fans remains to be seen but it's another clear response to some of yesterday's goings on.

Umbers has already commented on the suspension of Leeds assistant Steve Thompson, defending the decision despite criticism from supporters and journalists.

Whatever happens next at Elland Road remains as much of a mystery as what's gone before. But, according to the club's official line, Antenucci is free to play whenever he is needed...

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