Alan Biggs at Large: Does Sheffield United’s pursuit of a striker ask as many questions as it gives answers?

Nigel Clough
Nigel Clough
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I’m not here as an apologist over the protracted nature of Sheffield United’s striker search. But look at their targets for the reason why.

The focus has been on Championship forwards - Steven Davies (Blackpool), Chris O’Grady (Brighton), Dexter Blackstock (Nottingham Forest).

A breakthrough was finally possible as the Telegraph went to press with Brighton’s move for Aston Villa’s Darren Bent potentially freeing O’Grady for a Blades loan with a view to a permanent deal in January.

I understand the former Barnsley striker is amenable to a switch that would see him complete a South Yorkshire quartet, including Rotherham and Sheffield Wednesday.

Nigel Clough, above, has seen no point in lowering his sights. He has Michael Higdon nearing a return, having been injured just as he began to look the part, and also Marc McNulty. Would he play 4-4-2 with more options? I’m not sure he would, maybe preferring it as a change option if his breaking midfielders can’t deliver.

Meanwhile, time for the club and fans to close ranks and clear the debris of the Ched Evans affair. Co-chairman Jim Phipps, a good communicator, has been at the forefront of that, having had to pull together the club’s thinking as a whole (flawed in my view) and crave understanding if not acceptance.

Long-time owner Kevin McCabe has been silent throughout. Not for one second could anyone accuse him of lacking courage or commitment. Witness the way he faced down a demonstration after appointing Danny Wilson.

Yet, considering McCabe’s strongly rumoured wishes (from way back) to re-sign Evans, it would have been nice to have heard from him and it didn’t look good that we didn’t. That said, we move on now.