LUFC 21 years since the passing of the Don
May 26th marks the 21st anniversary of the passing of Don Revie, Leeds United`s most successful manager in their history.
Revie died in Edinburgh at the age of 61 after battling Motor Neurone disease since 1987.
The former England international joined Leeds as a player in 1958 and spent three seasons as a player before taking over as manager in 1961.
One of the first things he was to do was change Leeds United`s club colours from blue shirts and white shorts, to all white. He wanted the club to be feared around Europe and follow in the footsteps of Real Madrid who wore all white and ruled European football at that time.
The club were languishing in the old second division at the time but within three years they booked their return to the top flight by winning the second division title.
It was the start of ten years at the very top for Don Revie and his Leeds United side that saw players such as Billy Bremner, Peter Lorimer and Eddie Gray all come through the ranks to become household names.
In their first season in the top flight they was to finish runners up on goal average and also lose out in the FA Cup final after extra time.
During the ten years under his guidance in the top flight they went on to win the title twice, finished runners up five times and never finished outside the top four.
They won their first trophy under Don in 1968 when a Terry Cooper goal was enough to see them beat Arsenal 1-0 in the League Cup Final.
This was quickly followed up with their first European success when they beat Ferencvaros in the Inter City Fairs cup final.
In the 1968/69 season they won their first ever league title, losing just three games in the process and accumulating 67 points, 7 clear of second placed Liverpool.
Leeds won the Inter City Fairs cup for a second time in 1971 when they beat Juventus on the away goals rule.
They won the FA Cup in 1972 when they beat Arsenal 1-0 thanks to an Allan Clarke goal and just missed out on completing the double when they was forced to play their final game of the season at Wolves just 48 hours after the final.
Leeds lost 2-1 and lost the title by one point to Derby County.
He led Leeds to Wembley three times between 1970 and 73 in FA Cup finals.
They lost after a replay to Chelsea in 1970 and were surprisingly beaten by Sunderland in 1973 after the Sunderland goalkeeper Jim Montgomery single handedly managed to keep Leeds out with a string of saves.
Leeds were also beaten in the 1973 European Cup Winners Cup final against AC Milan 1-0. Allegations that the referee was bribed saw the referee banned for life, but the game was never replayed or result overturned.
Leeds won their second league title under Don in the 1973/74 they started the season with a then league record start of 29 games unbeaten.
Revie won the English manager of the year on three occasions in 1969/70 and 72.
The title success in 1974 was to be his final season with the club and he took over the job as manager of the England national side.
He was also awarded an OBE in 1970 in the Queens honours.
After his death, Leeds quickly renamed the Kop and it is now known as the Don Revie Stand.
Don Revie made Leeds United a worldwide name amongst football supporters and his legacy as manager will mean he will never be forgotten by fans of generations to come that will follow the players in the all white kit of Leeds United.
Gone but never forgotten.
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