SIMON Grayson will be “very disappointed” if he doesn’t get a good reception from the Blackpool fans tomorrow.
Speaking to The Gazette ahead of his Leeds side’s clash with the Seasiders, Grayson said he feels proud of what he achieved during a six-and-a-half year stay as player and manager at Bloomfield Road, leading the club into the top two tiers of English football after 29 years.
Grayson, who quit to take over at Leeds at Christmas 2008, said: “I hope I get a good reception from the Blackpool fans. I’ll be disappointed if I don’t because I spent a lot of time there and put in a lot of effort, both as a player and manager.
“Sometimes in football you do go on to other jobs. It was something I felt I had to do.
“It was disappointing how it worked out because I didn’t want to leave Blackpool in the lurch, and it would have been nice to have left them in a better manner than I did.
“But it happened because of how strongly I felt about the club I was going to.
“I was happy at Blackpool and felt I could take them further up the Championship. But when the club you support comes calling, the place where you started your career, it is too good an opportunity to turn down, especially considering the size of the Leeds club.
“It wasn’t a decision I took lightly and some people will be a little bit against me still. But hopefully that will be water under the bridge by now, and they’ll look back and be proud of what I achieved there.”
Grayson led Leeds to promotion in his first full season in charge and finished one place outside the Championship play-off zone last season. Leeds are seventh again now and bang in form, losing just one of their last nine league games.
“We’ll go into tomorrow’s game with confidence but we know we are in for a tough game,” added Grayson.
Click on the links below for a view from the opposition: