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  -   WHO'S WHO  
Thursday, December 5, 2002
David Batty
Club: Leeds United
Shirt Number: 23
Position: Midfielder
Date of Birth: December 2, 1968
Birthplace: Leeds
Height: 5' 8"
Weight: 12.2


Profile:

His presence in the Leeds United midfield alongside the youth of Bowyer, Bakke, McPhail and Kewell helped Leeds' revival no end.

The team were flying in 1999/2000 until the Yorkshireman was hit with a calf injury, which led to him missing the rest of the season and Euro 2000.

Became David O'Leary's first signing in December 1998, when he rejoined the club from Newcastle United in a deal worth 4.4million.

Represented the city of Leeds at every schoolboy level, before making his Leeds United debut at 18.

He soon became a regular, appearing over 250 times for the club, helping them first to promotion and then to the Football League title in 1991/92.

He was controversially sold to Blackburn Rovers in 1993 for 2.75million, where he did not enjoy his time and his on-pitch spat with Graeme Le Saux in a Champions League game will never be forgotten

Joined Newcastle in 1996 in a deal worth 3,75million, but when the chance came to rejoin Leeds United he took the opportunity without hesitation.

Has been an England regular for most of the 90s, and sadly, despite some strong performances, will be best known for his fateful penalty miss against Argentina in the World Cup of 1998.

Took him a long time to get back from the calf injury which led to him missing Euro 2000, and for a time it was thought his career could be at an end.

Finally returned in December 2000 in a Premiership match against Sunderland, and played a vital role as Leeds reached the semi-finals of the Champions League.

By the start of the 2002/03 season, Batty had amassed 359 appearances for Leeds, scoring four goals. The faithful are desperate for him to get on the scoresheet again.

However, new boss Terry Venables decided Batty was no longer fit for the top flight and banished him to the reserves. In fact, by the start of November he was training with the youth team.

Later that month, at the club's AGM, chairman Peter Ridsdale said Batty's knee problems meant he would never play for the first team again - even though his contract would run until the summer of 2004. Batty thus took legal advice....




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