Sheffield United will be “expected to pay £20m” to Manchester United for Dean Henderson at the end of his loan deal.

This is according to the Daily Mail, who included the line at the end of a piece about Blades owner Prince Abdullah. The case involving the Saudi prince and Kevin McCabe was being heard in the High Court again this week.

It has already been ruled that Prince Abdullah will buy McCabe’s shares in the club for £5m. He then has until next summer to purchase various other properties from his former co-owner for £50m. This includes the stadium, training ground and academy.

Yet during proceedings, McCabe’s representative, Paul Downes QC, claimed the Blades would be expected to pay £20m for Henderson. This would be due in June when the goalkeeper’s loan at Bramall Lane ends.

Will they sign Dean Henderson for £20m?

(Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

The report does not specify whether paying this fee would then secure Henderson on a permanent basis. However, while loan fees are not uncommon this would be exceptionally high for a relatively inexperienced player. They are also generally paid before the loan starts.

For example, when Bayern Munich signed James Rodriguez on a two-year loan from Real Madrid, the BBC reported they paid £4.46m a year.

So it would seem this agreement is to sign Henderson permanently. The £20m being quoted is also in line with what the Sun claimed the Red Devils would demand for the 22-year-old.

This therefore appears to suggest the Blades already have a deal in place to land Henderson. Which is likely to be greeted in a positive fashion by the fans, with the ‘keeper having been in largely excellent form since first joining in 2018.

Since then no stopper in England’s top four divisions has kept more clean sheets than Henderson’s 24. He also recently received his first senior call-up for the national team on the back of his impressive performances.

Any move would surely depend on the Blades remaining in the Premier League, though. While Henderson clearly has affection for the club, he is also ambitious. It’s highly unlikely he’d be happy playing outside of the top flight.

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