Leeds United F.C. History
Leeds United F.C. History : Foreword
1919-29 - The Twenties
1930-39 - The Thirties
1939-46 - The War Years
1947-49 - Post War Depression
1949-57 - The Reign of King John
1957-63 - From Charles to Revie
1961-75 - The Revie Years
1975-82 - The Downward Spiral
1982-88 - The Dark Years
1988-96 - The Wilko Years
1996-04 - The Rollercoaster Ride
2004-17 - Down Among The Deadmen
100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever
Greatest Leeds United Games
Players' Profiles
Managers' Profiles
Leeds City F.C. History
Leeds City F.C. Player and Manager Profiles
Leeds United/City Statistics
Leeds United/City Captains
Leeds United/City Friendlies and Other Games
Leeds United/City Reserves and Other Teams

Grella: Michael (Mike)

2009-2011 (Leeds Player Details)(Player Details)

Striker

Born: Glen Cove, New York, USA: 23-01-1987

Debut v Huddersfield Town (a) (Substitute): 14-02-2009

511 12st 2lb (2009)

Grella was born in in Glen Cove, New York and had a highly successful youth career. He was a 2003 and 2004 Parade Magazine High School All American soccer player and the 2004 NSCAA National High School Player of the Year for the Glen Cove Big Red. He led his club team, the Albertson Red Storm, to both the 2003 and 2004 USYSA National Championships and the Red Storm Academy to the 2004 Super Y-League Championship. Grella played college soccer for Duke University where he was a 2008 first team All American. During the 2006-07 collegiate off-season, he played for the Long Island Rough Riders in the Fourth Division USL Premier Development League. In 2008, he played for the Cary Rail Hawks Under-Twenty-Three team. In February 2009, he was drafted to Toronto FC. However, Grella decided against signing for the Canadian club, and instead tried his luck at playing in Europe. He went on trial with Leeds in January 2009, and scored a hat-trick for the club's Reserves in a 4-0 win over Barnsley on 12th January 2009. Reserve-Team Manager Neil Thompson told the club website: "That's all you can do as a striker. He was tidy around the ball and his finishing was good. He's still a young lad. He's showed a good attitude in training, but strikers are there to score goals and he did that." He also scored a goal in a behind closed doors Friendly game, with news of a permanent deal pending. He signed a full-time contract for Leeds United on transfer deadline day, 2nd February 2009, until the end of the 200910 season. He made his Leeds debut on 14th February 2009, coming on as a seventy-fourth minute substitute for Lee Trundle in a 10 defeat at Huddersfield Town and also came on as a fifty-ninth minute replacement for the same player in the next game at Hereford United. He had made eleven substitute appearances in the League and one in the play-offs by the end of the 2008-09 campaign. He made his run-on debut at Darlington on 10th August 2009 in the League Cup. Grella was given a new three year contract on 13th August 2009. He made his League run-on debut on 5th September 2009 at home to Stockport County and celebrated it with his first Leeds goal after nine minutes. He also scored in the 2-0 F.A.Cup win at Oldham Athletic on 24th November 2009 and twice in the 5-1 F.A. Cup win at home to Kettering Town on 8th December 2009. He also netted in the 3-2 Johnstone's Paint Trophy win at Carlisle United on 9th February 2010, however he was used primarily as a late impact player from the bench. He needed first team experience and to achieve this he was loaned to Carlisle United for an initial one month from 12th October 2010, which was later extended to three months. He managed to find the net three times in ten League appearances of which three were from the bench, and he also played one Johnstone's Paint Trophy game. Upon his return to Elland Road, he was once more found to be surplus to requirements and in late January a proposed transfer to Scottish club Motherwell fell through. On 25th February 2011 he was loaned to Swindon Town for the rest of the season. He had scored one League goal in six starts and one game from the bench when he claimed new Manager Paul Hart was not giving him enough playing time and he returned to Elland Road on 12th April 2011, with Hart nonsensing his claim by pointing out he had started five of the seven games since he had taken over. He was not able to play for Leeds until his loan spell with Swindon Town had expired and it was announced that he had been placed on the transfer list on 12th May 2011. In early June 2011, he was given permission to train with New York Cosmos but nothing came of it and he returned to Elland Road. There he went through pre-season training and played in a friendly for a Leeds United XI against Bradford Park Avenue and against a Leicester City XI in a behind-closed-doors friendly and scored twice in the latter game. He then scored, on 5th August 2011, for basically the reserve team, against Farsley Celtic in a 4-0 away win. On 26th August 2011 he joined Brentford in an emergency loan deal. He joined former Leeds United captain Jonathan Douglas at Griffin Park. His contract with Leeds was cancelled by mutual agreement on 31st August and he was able to sign a permanent deal with Brentford, after having played twice during his short loan spell. His contract with the Bees runs to June 2012. He has found once more that he is likely to figure mainly from the bench and, after his League debut on 27th August as a sixty-fifth minute substitute against Tranmere Rovers, his only starting game in the League came on 29th October 2011 at Griffin Park against Chesterfield and in early 2012 had eleven League games to his name, but no goals and just the one start. He had, however, started twice in the F.A. Cup and scored four times in one start and three games from the bench in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy. That one start in the Football League Trophy came in a 6-0 drubbing of Bournemouth on 8th November 2011, when he netted four times. After his contract with Brentford had been terminated by mutual consent on 14th February 2012, on 27th February 2012 he joined League One side Bury and by the end of the 2011-12 season he had scored four goals in eight starts and two games from the bench in the League. The day after signing for Bury he made his debut for his new club in a 2-1 loss against Hartlepool United. On 9th April 2012, Grella scored his first goal in a 4-1 win over Colchester United and five days later he scored his second with the only goal of the game in a 1-0 win over Bournemouth. On 21st April 2012, Grella scored two more in a 4-2 over Notts County. The win made certain of the club avoiding relegation. Bury offered him a contract extension to the end of the 2012-13 season but it was turned down by Grella who claimed he had accepted a bid from another League One club, believed to be Notts County. He had hoped to gain a regular first team spot to push his claimed for International recognition by USA. He has represented the United States at both Under-Eighteen and Under-Twenty levels. He holds both U.S.A. and Italian passports.

AppearancesGoals
League 3/261
F.A. Cup 1/33
League Cup 2/10
Johnstone's Paint Trophy 3/11