Date: 4th April 2016 at 8:53pm
Written by:

Name: Mirco Antenucci

Date of Birth: 08.09.1984

Previous clubs: Giulianova, Ancona (L), Catania, Venezia (L), Pisa (L), Ascoli (L), Torino, Catania, Ternana (L), Ternana, Leeds.

Appearances (goals): 296 (89)

After a month that saw a return of four goals for striker Mirco Antenucci, which helped Leeds to secure three successive victories, the Italian frontman was nominated for the Championship`s Player of the Month award for March, only to lose out to Sheffield Wednesday`s Fernando Forestieri.

Those goals took Antenucci`s tally for the season to 10, as he leads the club`s goalscorer charts for a second successive season, with his future at Elland Road still in the balance due to his current deal expiring at the end of the campaign, with manager Steve Evans keen to retain his services next term.

Having begun his career in the lower echelons of Italian football with Giulianova, the striker has turned out for a host of sides in his homeland, most notably Catania, where he made 18 Serie A appearances, and Torino, before joining Serie B side Ternana ahead of the 2013/2014 campaign, where he was installed as captain.

19 goals in 40 appearances for the club helped them to a 16th place finish in the Italian second tier, resulting in the Whites making a move in August 2014, securing his signature on a two-year deal for an undisclosed fee, as he became the club`s 11th addition that summer under David Hockaday.

Just a week after signing, the forward found himself playing under a new manager in the shape of Neil Redfearn, initially on a caretaker basis, with a short spell under Darko Milanič sandwiched in between Redfearn being handed the position on a permanent basis at the end of October.

The issues in the dugout didn`t appear to affect Antenucci`s performances on the pitch, as he bagged eight league goals for the club by the start of December, but the second half of the season proved difficult for the frontman, albeit finishing as top scorer, with two more goals taking his total to 10.

He featured rarely towards the end of the campaign, with his appearances largely coming from the bench, and rumours suggesting that his absence from the first team was due to a contract clause that would see him rewarded with an automatic one-year extension should he reach 12 goals.

That clause was confirmed by his agent, who stated Antenucci`s lack of playing time was solely Redfearn`s call, and he didn`t feature at all in the final six games, during which time he was part of a group of five players who controversially pulled out of the squad for a trip to Charlton citing injury.

Having been handed the number seven shirt in the summer, he scored on his return to the side on the opening day of the season, coming on as a substitute late on to give Leeds a 1-0 lead at home to Burnley, which lasted a matter of minutes as the Clarets hit back to secure a share of the spoils.

Rumours circulated during the last transfer that he wanted a return to Italy, but he remains a Leeds player until the summer at least, and has begun to hit some good form for Evans` side, and in the eight games he has found the net this season, Leeds have not lost, with four draws and four wins.