Chris Wilder has confirmed that Mark Duffy will not play for Sheffield United again.
Duffy could well have his season-long loan from Stoke City cut short in January having failed to make an impression under manager Michael O’Neill.
However, that will not mean the 34-year-old is offered another opportunity at Bramall Lane. Things turned extremely sour between Duffy and Wilder over the summer when the former asked for a new contract.
The attacking midfielder swiftly exited the club and joined Stoke. Yet he has managed just six Championship appearances for the struggling Potters since then. Only two have been starts.
With his contract up at the end of this season, Wilder says Duffy is free to leave.
What Sheffield United fans think about latest Duffy news
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Duffy was an extremely important part of the Blades’ rise through the divisions under Wilder. Joining from Birmingham City the summer after the 52-year-old took charge, he played 121 times for United – coinciding with two promotions.
Perhaps his most iconic individual moment in a Blades shirt came at Hillsborough during the 2017/18 season. Newly promoted from League One, United beat fierce rivals Sheffield Wednesday 4-2 in their own back yard. Duffy was on target.
So it is a sad way for things to end for such a previously important player under Wilder. Many supporters are unhappy it’s ended like this.