Sheffield United: No decision yet made on Marc McNulty's future as Blades target Manchester United starlet

Sheffield United, who are contemplating a move for Old Trafford youngster Joe Riley, have yet to decide whether Marc McNulty's loan at Bradford City will be renewed until the end of the season.

Monday, 2nd January 2017, 5:00 am
Updated Monday, 9th January 2017, 12:02 pm
Marc McNullty is currently on loan at Sheffield United's promotion rivals Bradford City

The striker signed a temporary agreement with Stuart McCall’s side earlier this term but, with City also challenging for promotion, Chris Wilder could choose to drag him back to South Yorkshire later this month.

United, who climbed to the top of the table following Saturday’s victory over Northampton Town, have also made no secret of their desire to bolster the attacking options at Wilder’s disposal during the transfer window with Riley among the potential targets being considered by the manager and his coaching staff.

Sheffield United target Joe Riley, pictured in action against the Blades during a loan spell at Bury last year

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Crucially, with Harry Chapman returning to Middlesbrough after suffering a serious ankle injury, he can operate either at left-back or in a more advanced role.

Although Wilder has refused to divulge the identity of those players being considered for moves to Bramall Lane, he is known to be pursuing several lines of enquiry ahead of the January 31 deadline.

“We’re spinning a few plates,” Wilder said.

“We’re looking at a couple of different things and we’ll do what we think is best for us.

Sheffield United target Joe Riley, pictured in action against the Blades during a loan spell at Bury last year

“That is the bottom line, what’s right for Sheffield United Football Club.”

Riley, aged 20, has made two senior appearances for Jose Mourinho’s side, including one against Midtjylland in the UEFA Europa League.

As The Star revealed two days ago, Wilder is exploring the possibility of signing him on a temporary basis until the end of the campaign.

But, speaking before the meeting with Robert Page’s side, confirmed he will not provide possible loan signings with any first-team guarantees.

McNulty, who joined United from Livingston in 2014, was a second-half substitute as fifth-placed City were held 1-1 by Bury. Wilder’s team visit Gigg Lane later today.

“Fifty points from 24 games is a great return, especially after the start we had,” Wilder said. “Now the race is on. The second half of the season will just fly. I am sure there are going to be more twists and turns, there are a lot of good teams, but we are a good team and are up on their merit. Now the key is to work harder, play better, and show the consistency to stay there.”