DANNY Wilson will this week step-up his efforts to sign a striker after admitting that Sheffield United have lost their ruthlessness in front of goal.
James Beattie, who scored 34 times in 65 appearances before leaving Bramall Lane in 2009, has been linked with a return to South Yorkshire following his release by Glasgow Rangers.
But Wilson, reflecting on Saturday’s defeat by League One leaders Charlton Athletic, hinted pace is now United’s number one priority in the loan market.
“We’ve been trying to bring someone in for a while and we’ll carry on doing that,” he said. “But the simple scenario is that it’s very difficult to try and persuade people to let their best centre-forwards go.
“If someone is scoring goals on a regular basis then, the chances are, they are going to be involved for their respective teams or they are being kept there in reserve.
“We do need pace up top. But, like I say, in terms of availability it’s tough.
“That doesn’t stop us looking though and we’ll carry on doing that.”
United slipped three places to sixth in the table after second-half goals from Yann Kermorgant and Bradley Wright-Phillips extended Charlton’s unbeaten run in the competition to 11 games.
Wilson, whose side return to action when they face Rotherham in the JP Trophy tomorrow, added: “There was nothing in the game and my biggest argument is that when we are on top we need to punish people with a goal.”
Having now lost three of their last four matches, United are intent on beating their neighbours when they travel to Don Valley Stadium.
“Derbies are always important and of course we’ll be fielding a strong team,” Wilson said. “As we’ve always maintained, we want to do well in the competition and after losing we want to bounce straight back with a win.”