John Fleck discusses Sheffield United situation with contract expiry looming
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Scottish international John Fleck has put thoughts about his Sheffield United future to the back of his mind, despite admitting he would “love” to extend his stay at Bramall Lane beyond the expiry of his contract this summer.
The midfielder is one of a number of Blades stars fighting for promotion to the Premier League while facing uncertain personal futures, with their deals set to expire at the end of June.
Key men including Wes Foderingham, Oli McBurnie and Ollie Norwood are also in the same boat, with all three expected to feature on Tuesday evening when the Blades travel to Reading looking to win their game in hand over third-placed Middlesbrough and restore their seven-point gap.
And Fleck, facing the media ahead of that game, admitted: “I’d love to stay. Right now that’s not at the front of my mind, it’s about trying to win games. There’s a lot of boys in the squad in the same scenario and I’m sure there’ll be a time to speak , when that is I’m not so sure.”
Fleck revealed he has not personally had any conversations about extending his time at Bramall Lane, conceding “there are more important things going on at the minute” with matters on the pitch, but denied suggestions that the ongoing uncertainly over so many members of Paul Heckingbottom’s first-team squad was having a negative impact.
“No, not at all,” the Scot said. “As I say, we’re a lot of experienced guys who’ve had different contract situations in their careers before. I’m sure there’ll be a time when everyone starts to speak or whatever, but that’ll be up to the club.”
United’s ongoing transfer embargo prevents the Blades from offering new contracts to their existing players, with uncertainty also surrounding the club’s ownership as Dozy Mmobuosi’s takeover bid continues to be ratified by the EFL.
Asked if he believed that was part of the delay in negotiations over a new deal, Fleck admitted: “I’m not sure. My guess would be that is part of the situation, I’m sure.
“Maybe depending on what league we’re going to be in, but I couldn’t really tell you. I’ve not had any conversations myself, so I don’t know what other people are doing.
“There are more important things at stake right now than player contracts. It’s obviously something, as an individual, you want to get sorted whenever you can.”