Sheffield United: Blades set to unveil new signing

Nigel Clough has made no secret of his desire to enter the loan market � copyright :  BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
Nigel Clough has made no secret of his desire to enter the loan market � copyright : BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
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Nigel Clough, the Sheffield United manager, is poised to bolster the defensive options at his disposal before Saturday’s derby against Chesterfield, writes James Shield.

United had hoped to make a breakthrough in the transfer market ahead of last month’s victory over Gillingham but negotiations were delayed due to red tape.

Although Clough refused to divulge the identity of the player concerned, Anthony Gerrard and Leeds’ Jason Pearce have both been linked with moves to Bramall Lane in recent weeks while the 48-year-old views former loanee John Brayford as a possible long-term target.

“We’re happy with the squad but if we get the chance to bring a good player in, especially with the volume of games coming up, then we’ll take it,” Clough told The Star last night. “We always want players to improve us or offer something different and, in this instance, that’s the case.

“It’s not a reflection on any of the lads here, far from it. But we do need to protect ourselves because of the schedule.”

Irrespective of whether Clough chooses to pursue his interest, Gerrard is expected to leave Huddersfield Town during the emergency loan window after failing to make a senior appearance this term. Aged 28, the centre-half represented Cardiff City, Walsall and Hull City before moving to West Yorkshire.

“If all goes well, hopefully they’ll be here and train on the Friday, that’s the plan,” Clough said. It’s taken a while because the club, the agent and the player all have to get together and make sure it’s exactly right.”

*Twitter: @JamesShield1