Sheffield United: Blades go back in for Byron Webster after unveiling Caolan Lavery

Sheffield United have made a second approach for Millwall's Byron Webster.

Wednesday, 31st August 2016, 5:00 am
Chris Wilder manager of Sheffield Utd welcomes new signing Caolan Lavery

The Star understands Chris Wilder’s side, who had an offer believed to be worth £250,000 rejected by their League One rivals last week, doubled their bid before yesterday’s Checkatrade Trophy tie against Leicester City U23’s.

Sources in the capital report that Millwall value the former York City and Doncaster Rovers centre-half at around £1m. But, with the player himself thought to be keen on returning north after two years at The Den, they could be tempted to open talks before the transfer window closes at 11pm this evening.

Although Wilder refused to be drawn on the identity of United’s targets, he said: “We’re down the road with two and we’re hopeful of getting them over the line. There is, however, still work to be done.

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“Ideally we’re looking at a right sided centre-half to give us some depth there. We’ve only got Willo (James Wilson) really who can do that role. Bash (Chris Basham) can but we’d rather keep him in midfield. We’re also possibly looking at another wide player.”

United recently held talks with Wigan Athletic’s Craig Morgan but Wilder added: “That one is dead in the water now. He was someone we spoke with but it won’t be going forward as things stand.”

United, who unveiled former Sheffield Wednesday marksman Caolan Lavery before the Northern Group H encounter with City, have recruited 10 new players since Wilder’s appointment during the close season.

Lavery’s arrival is expected to pave the way for Marc McNulty to depart Bramall Lane on a season-long loan, with Bradford City confident of securing the 23-year-old’s signature - although Bolton Wanderers and Northampton Town are also known to have monitored his progress in recent weeks. Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s ommision from the team which faced Steve Beaglehole’s side has also prompted speculation about his future. Manchester United and Everton are among those supposedly interested in the Steelphalt Academy graduate, although the latter recently baulked at United’s reported £1m asking price.

Webster, aged 29, progressed through the ranks at Bootham Crescent before joining Rovers following spells with FK Banik Most of the Czech Republic and Harrogate Town. Having gained promotion via the League One play-offs with Yeovil Town in 2013, he also helped Millwall reach the end of season knockouts last term.

Lavery has agreed a three year contract at Bramall Lane. Wilder, who commended him for “showing a great desire to come on board,” said: “Caolan, like Matty (Done), gives us that ability to really stretch teams. He’s got that aggression and pace which nobody, I don’t care who you are, likes playing against. We’re delighted to get him and he’s someone I’ve watched and admirered for quite a while.”

Explaining why McNulty has been granted permission to meet with Bradford, Wilder added: “Nobody has held a gun to my head about this. Marc made it clear he wanted to be playing regular first team football at the start of pre-season and, at this moment in time, I don’t think that something we can guarantee him.

“I can understand that but I also don’t want to keep an unhappy player here which he might have become. Nothing has been done yet and, even if it is, we’d have the right to recall Marc in January if he’s doing well and scoring goals.”