Our prolific striker departs the club...

Jermaine Beckford celebrates promotion

Leeds United have cancelled the contract of striker Jermaine Beckford to enable him to find a new club.

Jermaine will depart Elland Road with the best wishes of everyone connected with Leeds United and he is now free to find another club with immediate effect.

After the departing Rui Marques, Becks was the longest serving player at Elland Road, having joined the club in March 2006, making his debut as a substitute in a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Crystal Palace.

Jermaine made four more appearances from the bench that season as United pushed for the Play-Offs.

The following season Jermaine made his debut against Chester in the Carling Cup and his one and only league start for the club that season came at Sunderland on Boxing Day, when he played up front with Tresor Kandol for the first time.

During 2006/07, Jermaine also spent a month on loan at Carlisle, scoring on his debut against Millwall, and spent over four months at Scunthorpe United, where his eight goals helped the Iron gain a place in the Championship.

Jermaine Beckford celebrates the late equaliser

But he returned to Leeds in the summer of 2007 and it was under Dennis Wise that the striker's career took off. Becks netted 20 goals in 40 appearances as the club reached the Play-Off final.

The following season, Jermaine netted his first professional hat-trick, in a 5-2 Carling Cup win at Chester, his first FA Cup hat-trick, in a 5-2 success at Northampton, and his first league hat-trick as Yeovil were swept aside 4-0 at Elland Road.

He netted 34 goals in 37 appearances and became the first Leeds player since Lee Chapman to score 30 or more goals in a season.

Last term, Jermaine achieved the feat again, becoming only the second Leeds player to score 30 or more in a season on two occasions. Only John Charles had achieved this. He will go down in the club's history as the most prolific modern-day goalscorer to wear a white shirt.

He continued to collect numerous Player Of the Month awards, but one of his finest moments came at Old Trafford on January 3 when his goal secured Leeds the FA Cup scalp of Manchester United, and our first victory at Old Trafford since 1981.

Jermaine Beckford scores against Bristol Rovers

He followed that with two goals in the next round at Tottenham, including a 96th minute equaliser from the penalty spot.

While the team struggled for form during the second half of the season, by his own admission Jermaine failed to hit the standards he had set himself in front of goal, but the striker's confidence didn't waiver, and it was fitting that, wearing the captain's armband for the first time, he scored the winning goal against Bristol Rovers on the final day of the season to secure our elevation to the Championship.

Jermaine is now expected to continue his career at the highest level of English football, and all at Leeds wish him every success.




TV Leeds