Former Leeds United defender says the club may have to win promotion before a big money buyer comes in.
Former Leeds United centre-back Michael Duberry has been discussing the club's failure to attract a billionaire owner.
Duberry was part of the team which was relegated from the Premier League in 2004, and under the stewardship of Ken Bates, GFH Capital, and Massimo Cellino, the side have been unable to mount a credible promotion challenge, even taking an unwanted detour to League One.
Speaking to playwithalegend.com, Duberry said it is 'sad' the club have been unable to spin a deal with a super-rich owner, and believes they are stuck in a vicious circle with potential buyers being unwilling to invest in teams which are not already in the top flight, because getting out of the Championship is so difficult.
He said: "I think everyone who isn’t associated with Leeds will think ‘why hasn’t someone come along and thought oh, I’d like a piece of that’ but you know what? All these people with money that buy clubs want to buy a club in the Premier League.
"They don’t want to buy a club in the Championship because that’s a gamble, they want to buy a club that is in the Premier League.
"They wouldn’t even want to buy Aston Villa now because they’re going to be a Championship club. They buy it for the advertising, don’t they?
"The audience is that much smaller compared to the Premier League, so Leeds won’t attract anyone unless they get to the Premier League. They get to the Premier League, even on a shoe-string budget, someone will buy them. It’s sad but that’s how it is."
Middlesbrough's recent struggle for form has highlighted how even with investment, £13 million to sign Jordan Rhodes in January, there is no guarantee for success in terms of winning promotion.
They may come good before the end of the campaign, but Leeds fans are already wishing it was next season so they can try again, currently in 15th position in the Championship.
Sections of the Leeds support have been protesting recently as they hope for a buyer to come in and snap up the club from Massimo Cellino, but if Duberry's comments prove correct, the team will have to earn promotion the hard way before new owners make an approach.
Dreamt of playing football with your childhood hero? Well, now you can! Play with a Legend brings together football fans and their idols for a memorable football game and a post match pint where you can hear tales from the dressing room. It’s perfect for a stag, birthday, corporate or charity event and with over 80 former professionals involved, there’s sure to be someone you’d like to play alongside.