Defiant Blades stand up to bargain bullies

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SHEFFIELD United are refusing to be bullied into submission by rivals looking to cherry-pick talent from Danny Wilson’s squad despite the manager’s admission that he would prefer to complete the majority of his business before next month’s League One opener against Oldham Athletic.

Kevin McCabe, United’s plc chairman and major shareholder, has publicly admitted that players will have to be sold as the club counts the financial cost of its relegation from the Championship. But he has recently hinted that he is prepared to pump another chunk of his fortune into Bramall Lane’s coffers, and that insinuation means that United are refusing to accept cut-price fees for the likes of Ched Evans and Nick Montgomery.

“Although there are players that United would like to move on, at the moment they are still asking for people to pay what would be described as good money for them,” a source at one of Evans’ potential suitors told The Star.

“There was a theory that they would be quite relaxed about things like fees simply to get people off the wage bill.

“The situation could change as time drags on but, at this stage, that is proving to be anything but the case.”

Middlesbrough, Cardiff City and Leicester are among those known to be monitoring Evans’ situation in South Yorkshire.

“The position means that some deals involving United might not happen until the end of the transfer window,” the source added.

“The market as a whole is still very tight.”

Darius Henderson became United’s first-high profile departure last week when he completed his much-anticipated move to Championship Millwall.

The striker, who admitted he felt “personally responsible” for his former employers’ plight after missing the majority of the 2010/11 campaign through injury, has been joined by another United old boy, Jordan Stewart, following his departure from Greek outfit Skoda Xanthi.

Although the deal which saw Henderson return to the capital is believed to be mainly performance based, it could prove lucrative for United if the 29-year-old impresses for Kenny Jackett’s side.

“I would have stayed in Sheffield but I didn’t want to be a financial drain,” Henderson said at the time.