Blades swoop for Bennett

Stefan Scougall will not be risked against Fenerbahce
Stefan Scougall will not be risked against Fenerbahce
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Derby County striker Mason Bennett is expected to join Sheffield United on loan imminently - and should be joined at Bramall Lane by Rams teammate Kieron Freeman.

Bennett, aged 18, recently signed a new four-year deal at the iPro Stadium, and looks set to further his development by agreeing a six-month loan spell under former Derby boss Nigel Clough at Bramall Lane.

And Kieron Freeman, who played 12 times on loan for the Blades last season, is set to join him after Clough revealed that a deal has been agreed with his former employers - and could play in United’s prestigious pre-season friendly against Turkish giants Fenerbahçe at Bramall Lane tonight.

“We are happy with our full backs, Craig Alcock and Bob Harris,” Clough added.

“But if one gets injured, we have no cover for them so Kieron is ideal. He can come in and compete with both of them.

“It’s unlikely that either Craig or Bob will play 50 or 60 games for us this season, so they will have to be rotated at times and Kieron is ideal for that.

We’re nearly there with him and he’s been pencilled in to play a part against Fenerbahçe, if all goes to plan.”

Freeman’s imminent arrival does not signal the end of Clough’s interest in John Brayford, however, with the former England international admitting: “John remains a player we would very much like to bring in.

“But he remains a Cardiff player. They want to hang on to him, but we’ll keep pestering them.”

Harry Maguire’s move to Premier League side Hull City was confirmed yesterday, for an initial fee of around £2.5m.

Maguire was unveiled by Hull earlier in the week, before United had signed the necessary paperwork to confirm the deal.

“We are disappointed to lose a good player,” Clough said, “as Harry has given the club three or four years of good service at senior level.

“But we move on, and our aim now is to strengthen the squad in certain areas in the time we have available.”

Stefan Scougall and Jose Baxter, both taken off with injuries in United’s 1-0 defeat against Huddersfield on Tuesday evening, will not be risked against the Turkish champions, with one eye on United’s League One opening game against Bristol City on August 9.