Sheffield United’s on loan midfielder, Conor Hourihane, has admitted he is calm over his future after conceding his time with Aston Villa is probably done.
Hourihane has been a key figure for United in recent months. Since Paul Heckingbottom took over, the former Barnsley man has become integral in the middle of the park. Indeed, his form is a long way from the woeful performance against Millwall he had under Slavisa Jokanovic. That night, Hourihane was taken off after just 34 minutes.
However, whether United and Hourihane will make things more permanent in the summer remains to be seen. It will depend on budgets from the United end, while for Hourihane, he might have other clubs interested. But regardless, the Irishman isn’t worried, and admits he will simply have to see what happens.
“The Villa chapter is probably done. There has been nothing, to be honest with you. No conversations there so we’ll see what happens in the summer,” Hourihane told the Irish Examiner.
“When I went on loan for the season with Sheffield United, I wanted to do well. I’ve been quite casual about what happens at the end of the season. It’s the first time in my career, fortunately enough for me, that I’ve been out of contract.
“It’s important for me to keep playing well for Sheffield United — the same for Ireland. If I break into the team over these two games and get some minutes, we’ll see what happens come the summer.”
Our View: Hourihane Has Proven His Worth To Sheffield United
We’ll admit it. When it comes to Hourihane, we’ve gone from being delighted he signed, to wondering what he was doing even playing for us, to now being more than happy with him.
Ultimately, he was just another victim of the miserable performances under Jokanovic early in the season. Now, with a manager in Heckingbottom who he knows and trusts, Hourihane is thriving. As we all saw at the weekend, it was his quick thinking and moment of quality that effectively won us the game against Barnsley.
Of course, this will come down to financials. But whether we are in the Premier League or the Championship, you do feel Hourihane can offer this Sheffield United side something. On a free transfer, and on the right contract, signing him permanently is a no-brainer in our eyes.