Two more Sheffield United players are reportedly poised to sign new contracts with the club.
Billy Sharp, Oliver Norwood and David McGoldrick have recently put pen to paper on new deals and more are expected to follow.
The Sheffield Star reports that the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic could see the Blades lose up to £30m. This will affect the transfer budget and investment in the squad for next season.
As a result, manager Chris Wilder is hoping to tie down more of the current players to new contracts. Firstly, Wilder has given an update on the ongoing negotiations with John Lundstram.
“It’s something, longer term deals, that has been going on in the background,” the United boss said.
“The John Lundstram deal is on the table and we’ll be triggering it.”
Lundstram was set to be a free agent as of yesterday. However, there was an automatic one-year extension written into his deal which the club have triggered.
There are also talks about a longer term deal for Lundstram that will keep the midfielder at Bramall Lane beyond 2021.
Which other Sheffield United players are set for new contracts?
Four more Blades were due to be out of contract as of the end of June, but have since signed temporary extensions to keep them with the club until the end of the 2019/20 season.
They are Leon Clarke, Kieron Freeman, Phil Jagielka and Jack Rodwell. It means that Mark Duffy, Ricky Holmes and Ravel Morrison have now all left South Yorkshire as free agents.
Of the quartet who are staying, Wilder has suggested that veteran defender Jagielka is the most likely to be offered a new contract.
“Jags has brought a great amount of experience into the group,” the 52-year-old continued.
“Jags has put himself in the situation to earn a new contract. But it’s a moving situation, he understands that.”
Finally, Richairo Zivkovic has extended his loan from Changchun Yatai until the end of the campaign. Dean Henderson has done the same, but Mo Besic and Panos Retsos have returned to Everton and Bayer Leverkusen respectively.
Yet unlike Henderson’s temporary stay from Manchester United, the Blades have the option to make Zivkovic’s move permanent.
Wilder had said activating the buyout clause no longer made financial sense. However, there is now a suggestion the asking price could be reduced, or the payment plan be restructured.
“Regarding budgets and whatever, with Richairo, it’s moving all the time,” Wilder said.
“It was a loan with a view and it still is. There’s conversations we’ve had in terms of overall (squad) structure. Some players will go out, some will be released.
“Richairo is with us for another month and we’ll see what happens.”