Sheffield United will refuse to budge on their valuation of Harry Maguire - despite the young centre-half admitting that a move to Hull City would be a “dream”.
Maguire has been the subject of intense transfer speculation all summer, with reports yesterday suggesting that Nottingham Forest had joined Wolverhampton Wanderers and Hull in courting the 21-year-old’s services.
Wolves, last season’s League One winners, have had bids in the region of £1m and £1.5m turned down by the Bramall Lane board, who are under no immediate pressure to cash in on their prized asset.
Their situation is somewhat strengthened by Maguire’s age because, as he is under 24, United would be entitled to compensation should he depart Bramall Lane as a ‘free’ agent when his contract expires next summer.
And Maguire’s quotes - “Playing in the Premier League and Europe will be a dream for me at this stage of my career” - will not alter their hardline stance on the player’s immediate future.
United offered to significantly improve the terms of Maguire’s contract recently, before the player’s representative informed United that he wished to place negotiations on hold. Blades boss Nigel Clough insisted last week that Maguire’s attitude in training had been “fine”, and reiterated that no bids have yet been received which match the club’s valuation.
Maguire added: “I’ve played nearly 170 games, I’m just 21 and the Sheffield United fans know I’ve given my all in every game I’ve played.”
United believe that staying at Bramall Lane would benefit Maguire’s development - especially after Jordan Slew, Maguire’s ex-teammate, joined Blackburn Rovers for £1m three years ago. He has made just 28 league starts since - 17 of which came on loan at Ross County - and has scored twice.