Sheffield United: Blades target Neal Maupay is withdrawn from Brentford friendly

Neal Maupay missed last night's friendly between Brentford and AFC Wimbledon because of injury, Thomas Frank has insisted.

Saturday, 6th July 2019, 10:16 am
Updated Saturday, 6th July 2019, 11:17 am
Sheffield United want Neal Maupay to spearhead their attack in the top-flight next season: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

Maupay, who as The Star revealed earlier this summer is one of Sheffield United's leading transfer targets, had been scheduled to play in the match but failed to make the team sheet.

Frank, the Brentford manager, later attributed the Frenchman's absence to an unspecified fitness concern. Said Benrahma, another visiting player linked with a move away from Griffin Park, also sat out the match - which Brentford won 3-0 - due to a problem he picked up last season. The two will know be assessed before a decision is taken on whether they travel to Europe with the rest of Frank's squad next week.

"Said is still recovering from his injury in the Spring, while Neal had just a slight overload and we are checking him for Austria," the Dane told West London Sport.

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Brentford's Neal Maupay celebrates a goal: Ian Walton/PA Wire

Together with Swansea City's Oli McBurnie, Maupay has been identified by United as a potential new signing ahead of the new Premier League campaign, which they begin with a trip to AFC Bournemouth on August 10.

Previously of Nice and St Etienne, Maupay scored nearly 30 goals in the Championship last term and is expected to command a fee in excess of £15m if he is sold before then.

Intriguingly, Frank deployed a back three during Brentford's victiry over Wally Downes' side after praising United use of the system following a match at Bramall Lane March; a month before Wilder's squad secured automatic promotion.

Thomas Frank: Bruce Rollinson