It seems Sheffield United caretaker manager Paul Heckingbottom is wrong about Sander Berge.
That’s if The Sheffield Star are correct, with the newspaper reporting Berge is “expected” to leave the club this summer.
This is hardly ground-breaking news considering how strongly the midfielder has been linked with an exit from Bramall Lane.
With the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City said to be interested, Berge is unlikely to hang around to play in the Championship next season.
However, it does completely contradict Heckingbottom’s recent claim.
So which is true?
Berge going, or is Heckingbottom right?
Heckingbottom did admittedly caveat his comment by adding that the future of Berge “might not be up to us”.
We assume “us” is referring to the management team. If the United board receive a bid for Berge they deem acceptable, then they will sell,
Especially as they think they could get as much as £35m for the Norway international. With £40m apparently needing to be raised in player sales following relegation, that would almost cover it.
Heckingbottom does point out that Berge is under contract at Bramall Lane. The 23-year-old signed a four-and-a-half-year deal when he joined from Genk in January 2020.
While this does not guarantee Berge won’t want to leave, it does make the Blades’ negotiating position much stronger.
In truth, if the Norwegian were still in South Yorkshire when the 2021/22 campaign kicks off then it would be a huge surprise.
Berge is clearly a player of Premier League standard and certainly isn’t short of potential suitors.
Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur have also reportedly been notified about the availability of the midfield ace this summer.
That’s four clubs considered among the “big six” in the top flight of English football. United were lucky to even sign him in the first place it seems.