Alexander Blessin could become the new manager of Sheffield United before the end of the season.
That’s according to The Yorkshire Post, who say that reports in Belgium claim Blessin is leaving his current role at Oostende imminently.
Unlikely to be known to many Blades fans, the German has quickly emerged as the frontrunner to succeed Chris Wilder at Bramall Lane.
Formerly a youth coach at RB Leipzig, Blessin has been impressing in the Belgian top flight this term.
Despite finishing second bottom in 2019/20, Oostende are currently fourth in the Jupiler Pro League and in a Europa League qualification spot.
United board member Jan van Winckel knows the division well and is a fan of Blessin.
As a confidant to owner Prince Abdullah, it’s understood Van Winckel has played a key role in identifying the 47-year-old as a managerial candidate.
Why the Blades want Alexander Blessin
Aside from his impressive performance with Oostende this campaign, there are some other reasons the Blades are interested.
Firstly, Blessin’s achievements this term have come with a relatively small budget. This ability to work with limited funds appeals.
As is his history working with academies and promoting youth players.
Tactically Blessin also ticks the right boxes for the United hierarchy. Oostende play a 3-5-2 formation, just as the Blades do.
It means that Blessin is likely to be able to work with the current squad.
He also employs the Gegenpressing style made famous in Germany by Jurgen Klopp and Borussia Dortmund.
Finally, Blessin appears to be a better candidate to work under a new transfer system at Bramall Lane.
Part of the reason Wilder eventually left was his unwillingness to relinquish control when it came to new signings.
In the new structure, Van Winckel will be involved in recruitment and the board will have a say on incoming players.
They also think that Blessin would be more willing to integrate players from across the globe than Wilder was.