Assessing if any out of contract Sheffield United players will stay beyond this summer - Sheffield United News
Assessing if any out of contract Sheffield United players will stay beyond this summer
Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Assessing if any out of contract Sheffield United players will stay beyond this summer

There are several Sheffield United players set to be out of contract this summer.

This is not including loanees Dean Henderson and Mo Besic, who will return to Manchester United and Everton respectively when their temporary deals expire.

There has already been lots of speculation about whether the Blades will be able to re-sign Henderson for a third season. It’s a debate that is set to rumble on for the foreseeable future.

It also doesn’t include January loan signings Panos Retsos and Richairo Zivkovic. They are yet to make their debuts for the club, but both have options to make their moves permanent.

John Lundstram is another not mentioned on our list. While Lundstram’s current contract does expire in 2020, there is an option to extend that by a further 12 months – which Chris Wilder has already said will be activated.


The Blades are in discussions about offering the midfielder a brand new deal in any case.

Finally, there are five players currently out on loan whose contracts expire upon their return. This includes; Mark Duffy, Jake Eastwood, Ben Heneghan, Ravel Morrison and Nathan Thomas.

Eastwood and Morrison would probably be the only potential cases for new contracts. Yet with them on loan at League One and Championship sides respectively, that appears unlikely.

Who are the other out of contract Sheffield United players?

(Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

That leaves a list of five. They are; Leon Clarke, Kieron Freeman, Ricky Holmes, Phil Jagielka and Jack Rodwell.

Leon Clarke

Despite his important contributions in the lower divisions, Clarke is effectively now sixth choice striker at Bramall Lane. Wilder had planned for the 35-year-old to leave during the January transfer window.

Clarke has been an incredible servant to the club, but his time in South Yorkshire is surely coming to an end.

Kieron Freeman

Freeman was linked with a loan move to the Championship in January, although it never materialised. Limited to cup appearances this term, the 27-year-old is now well behind George Baldock for a place at right wing-back.

Another deal also seems unlikely, although he is solid backup for Baldock.

Ricky Holmes

Perhaps the most certain to depart is Holmes. Many Blades fans could be forgiven for not even realising he was still at the club.

Holmes has played just five times for Wilder’s side since joining from Charlton Athletic in January 2018. Subsequent loan moves to Oxford United and Gillingham have been interrupted by injury.

Jack Rodwell

Rodwell is an experiment that doesn’t seem to have paid off. Signed as a free agent in January, the 29-year-old has played just once since – in the FA Cup win against AFC Fylde.

It has been a spectacular fall from grace for Rodwell, who is an England international and Premier League winner. Again, a new contract is unlikely.

Phil Jagielka

Perhaps the only realistic candidate for a new deal is Jagielka. This is despite the fact the defender will be 38 in August and has played just eight times in 2019/20.

That’s because the hugely experienced former England international is a big influence at Bramall Lane. The way Wilder speaks about Jagielka suggests he wants to keep him around – maybe even as a coach?

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