Chris Wilder drops a hint over Rhian Brewster's Sheffield United struggles since club-record move from Liverpool
Chris Wilder believes Rhian Brewster will still come good for Sheffield United despite the young striker's difficult start to life at Bramall Lane.
The 20-year-old became United's record signing when he joined from Liverpool earlier this season in a deal that could eventually be worth as much as £23.5m, but has yet to hit the back of the net for his new club in 20 appearances.
The youngster didn't even make it off the bench as United lost to his former employers on Sunday evening, with Oli Burke and 35-year-old club skipper Billy Sharp being introduced instead as Wilder's men chased a route back into a game they went on to lose 2-0.
And afterwards, Wilder opened up about the England U21 striker's troubles.
"I will explain when it's right regarding Rhian," Wilder said.
"It's a tough gig for him. We felt the best way of going about it was to play McBurnie and McGoldrick. Lys Mousset is not 100 per cent fit, and then it's a decision between him and the skipper.
"I suppose if Rhian comes on and the skipper doesn't, the question is: '"Why aren't you playing the skipper?'
"I always have those decisions to make.
"I know there will be a little bit of criticism about it, but he will come good.
"He's an England Under-21 striker, but maybe he has to find his form and feet in another division.
"It was always going to be an introductory season for Rhian. People may think: 'Well, why spend that money on him?' and I think availability and wages might come into play.
"Rhian is going to be a player, and we have good young players at this football club.
"The season has been a disappointment but it's one we can learn from and look to bounce back."
Wilder's comments about wages highlight the difficulties United are up against in the Premier League. They were never going to be able to afford to meet the demands of someone like Callum Wilson, while Aston Villa are rumoured to be paying Ollie Watkins £70,000 a week despite the striker never playing in the top-flight before this season.