Wolverhampton Wanderers have placed their pursuit of Harry Maguire on the backburner after Kenny Jackett, the Championship club’s manager, once again stressed Richard Stearman’s decision to sign a new contract has reduced his need for a new centre-half, writes James Shield.
Maguire reported for pre-season training with the rest of Sheffield United’s first team squad last week after Bramall Lane’s hierarchy rejected bids worth £1m and £1.5m from their counterparts at Molineux earlier this summer.
Nigel Clough, Jackett’s counterpart in South Yorkshire, insisted on Tuesday that “nothing had changed” regarding Maguire’s position with United following Wolves’ refusal to submit an improved bid.
And with Hull City, the other team interested in acquiring the 21-year-old’s services, also showing no inclination to increase their valuation, United hope his representative will be forced back to the negotiating table after withdrawing from discussions about a new contract.
Assessing the impact of Wolves’ ability to resolve the uncertainty surrounding Stearman’s future, Jackett said: “We’re not short in that department. Richard formed a very good partnership with Danny Batth and we also have Sam Ricketts who can play that position.
“There’s also Ethan Ebanks-Landell who’s a really good player as well.”
As The Star recently revealed, United offered to significantly improve Maguire’s terms and conditions after seeing him enter the final 12 months of his present deal.
However, following confirmation that Wolves and City were monitoring the situation, the defender’s agent informed them that his client wanted to postpone talks until a later date.
Clough, speaking at the Redtooth Academy earlier this week, described Maguire’s attitude as “absolutely fine” but hinted United would not look to resurrect those discussions until the transfer window closed.
“We’ve not received anything,” Clough said, “Which changes things for us.”