WITH almost indecent haste, Leeds United confirmed George Graham as their new manager on Tuesday. Barely 24 hours after Howard Wilkinson's tenure was terminated at a news conference, the former Arsenal manager told a similar gathering of his determination to challenge for the championship again. Graham, whose year-long ban from football ended in June, had been out of the game for 14 months since being found guilty of misconduct in the Rune Hauge 'bungs' affair. Bill Fotherby, the Leeds chairman, insisted he had not met the 51-year-old Scot until 7am that morning. Graham has accepted a two-and-a-half-year contract on a salary of GBP300,000. He said he had been 'dying to get back, but obviously to the right job, somewhere near the top of the League and where the expectations are big'. Fotherby admitted the board had considered Graham's self-confessed folly in accepting 'unsolicited gifts' of GBP425,000 from Hauge, a Norwegian agent. 'We discussed what happened to him,' he said, 'but decided it wasn't relevant.' Chris Akers, the chairman of the Caspian Group which bought control of Leeds during the summer, said they had acted quickly because they did not want 'a void'. Graham is expected to try to lure Stewart Houston from his caretaker manager's role at Highbury as his number two. David O'Leary is also tipped to join his backroom team, while some of Caspian's GBP10 million kitty for signings may go on Arsenal's Steve Bould and Ian Wright. 'I've got to stamp my way of working on my staff and players, and bring in some new blood,' Graham said. 'I'm not promising overnight success because I don't believe in it. Success is built with good foundations and a lot of hard work on the training pitch.' Graham paid tribute to Wilkinson, whose eight-year reign ended after a 4-0 defeat by Manchester United. 'Howard did a great job for Leeds, and the fans should remember the good times.' Leeds, who have failed to build on their title success of 1992, were clearly attracted by Graham's record. In his nine years at Arsenal, they won the championship twice, the FA Cup and League Cup 'double', and the European Cup-Winners' Cup. Yet his teams were also labelled 'boring', and there were highly-publicised disciplinary problems. Before his sacking, 19 months ago, some observers felt Graham had become a lame-duck manager. Results were poor and the Hauge scandal persisted. Leeds supporters, however, are used to their team being unloved; and Don Revie was no stranger to rumours of financial misdemeanours. Speaking on BBC Radio Five Live, one fan welcomed Graham, saying: 'Boring, boring Leeds will do me as long as we're winning trophies.' George Graham fact file 1944: Born Bargeddie, Scotland, November 30. 1962: Signs for Aston Villa. 1963: Collects League Cup runners-up medal as Villa lose to Birmingham. 1964: Transferred to Chelsea. 1965: Collects League Cup winners' medal after victory over Leicester. 1966: Joins Arsenal for GBP50,000, collecting League Cup runners-up medals in 1968 (beaten by Leeds) and 1969 (Swindon). 1970: Helps Arsenal win Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, beating Belgium's Anderlecht in the final. 1971: A key member of Arsenal's League and FA Cup double-winning side. 1972: Leaves Highbury to join Manchester United after collecting FA Cup runners-up medal (Arsenal are beaten by Leeds) and the first of 12 Scotland international caps. 1974: Transferred to Portsmouth. 1976: Moves to Crystal Palace, helping them earn promotion to Second Division. 1977: Retires from playing and works part-time as a barman before taking coaching job at Queens Park Rangers. Moves to Crystal Palace as coach. 1982: Joins Millwall as manager. 1985: Guides Millwall to promotion from Third Division. 1986: Becomes Arsenal manager in May and wins League Cup (beating Liverpool). 1988: Takes Arsenal to another League Cup final but suffers surprise Wembley defeat by Luton. 1989: Guides Arsenal to their first League title for 18 years thanks to dramatic injury-time decider by Michael Thomas in the final match of the season at Liverpool. 1991: Arsenal - who lose only one League match all season - are champions again, even though they are deducted two points after an on-pitch brawl at Manchester United. 1993: Graham presides over historic FA Cup and League Cup double-triumph, as Sheffield Wednesday are beaten in both finals. 1994: Crowns a brilliant European Cup Winners' Cup campaign with 1-0 tactical triumph over crack Italians Parma in Copenhagen. But by November Arsenal are languishing in mid-table. In December Graham is accused of taking a GBP285,000 'bung' in the John Jensen transfer. 1995: Arsenal terminate his contract on February 21 after Premier League inquiry concluded he did not act in the best interests of the club. Ordered to face FA inquiry. Found guilty of misconduct by FA disciplinary commission and banned for a year. 1996: Graham's world-wide ban ends on June 30. Graham turns down offer to become new manager of Manchester City after earlier expressing an interest in the job. Becomes new manager of Leeds on September 10, 24 hours after Howard Wilkinson is sacked at Elland Road.