SHEFFIELD United were last night closing in on the signature of Coventry City's Michael Doyle.
The midfielder, who has played nearly 300 games for Aidy Boothroyd's side, spent yesterday afternoon undergoing a medical at Bramall Lane.
Although Coventry have refused to publicly comment on Doyle's situation, privately they expect him to be unveiled as a United player within 24 hours.
Micky Adams, the South Yorkshire club's manager, is a huge admirer of the former Celtic trainee's talents, having worked with him during a two-year spell in the Midlands earlier in his career.
Doyle, who captained Coventry when United visited the Ricoh Arena earlier this month, returned the compliment by describing Adams as "brilliant" on the eve of that match.
"Micky was a great manager to play for," he said. "I really enjoyed working under him.
"He's got a lot of character."
Having captured Marcus Bent, Joe Mattock and Shane Lowry on temporary deals soon after his appointment, Adams admitted following Saturday's defeat by Norwich City that he wants to inject more experience into United's youthful squad.
But, despite revealing he hopes to make at least one permanent signing before the transfer window closes, he also reserved the right to re-enter the loan market.
"We're always looking but we're not going to panic," said Adams.
"We can still do some business after it (the deadline) passes anyway.
"The most important thing is that we bring the right people in.
"We are always looking to improve. That never stops.
"We are always monitoring who might be out there and what might or might not be possible."
Although the length of Doyle's contract remains unclear, The Star can confirm that Coventry have not demanded a fee.
"I can't say anything but good things about Michael," Boothroyd revealed yesterday. "But I'm sure he could get a lot more money elsewhere so it might just be right for him if that's the case."
Doyle is expected to make his United debut against Leicester next week when Adams' side, who were beaten 2-1 by Norwich, will look to claw themselves away from the Championship's relegation zone.
That result left them just a point above 22nd-placed Crystal Palace.
"We've got to keep working hard and battling away," said Adams. "Of course it's not going to be easy. It never is in these situations.
"But the lads have shown they are willing to do that and they've shown the right character and attitude too.
"Those qualities are going to be vital as we look to get ourselves into a better position."
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