Sheffield United are facing a huge ask in trying to keep hold of star player Iliman Ndiaye, after reports claimed he could be on his way to Marseille.

Transfer guru and journalist Fabrizio Romano had broken the news of Ndiaye being in talks with Marseille over a five-year contract. However, since then, conflicting information has come to light.

More local reports suggest United have had zero approach from Marseille as yet. That goes against what’s being said in France, where multiple claims suggest the Ligue 1 outfit are negotiating terms with the Blades.

Further, PA also claims United have offered Ndiaye a bumper new deal as a counter-offer.

And in a further twist, BBC Radio Sheffield’s Andy Giddings has now had his say. Taking to Twitter this afternoon, Giddings has firmed up suggestions that United have indeed offered Ndiaye a bumper new contract, while also confirming that no approach has been made.

It remains to be seen or known what sort of terms United have offered to Ndiaye. But it’s expected that he’ll be made the highest earner in the squad, given his status at Bramall Lane.

Ndiaye has made no noises publically about wanting to leave. However, it’s well known that he has strong feelings towards Marseille.

Sheffield United News View: Cannot be left to drag out

This will now be a test of mettle for Stephen Bettis. Can he get Ndiaye’s team to the negotiating table and put up the money to convince him to stay for now at least? And if not, can he get Marseille to pay the sort of money we all know Ndiaye is worth.

Either way, this feels like a critical time for Sheffield United this summer. We cannot really afford to lose Ndiaye but on the flipside, with just four weeks until the season starts, we cannot let things drag on either.

One way or another, this needs to reach a conclusion quickly.

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