Chris Wilder is not prepared to do business with clubs which make “ridiculous” demands before allowing their players to depart on loan.
The Sheffield United manager, who has acknowledged the temporary transfer market could prove a valuable source of talent ahead of the new Championship season, issued the threat after praising Manchester United’s conduct before Joe Riley’s move to Bramall Lane last term.
Revealing he has refused to sanction “a couple” of proposed deals since taking charge 12 months ago, Wilder said: “We’ve walked away in the past. There’s been things where you have to pay double the wages if they don’t play and stuff like that.
“There was nothing of the sort with Joe Riley from Manchester United. That’s one of the biggest clubs in the world. I spoke to Nicky Butt and he said ‘it’s up to Joe to try and oust Kieron Freeman.’ He was ready to try and take that challenge up. Brilliant from him. Great attitude from his parent club and he came in and gave serious competition.”
Although Wilder’s recruitment strategy is focused on permanent acquisitions - Ched Evans and Nathan Thomas both joined United earlier this month - he cited the contributions Daniel Lafferty and Ethan Ebanks-Landell made to United’s League One title winning campaign after arriving on loan last year. Riley was forced to return to Old Trafford after dislocating a shoulder in February but, like Ebanks-Landell, Wilder remains keen to work with him again.
“He did push Kieron to keep his standards high,” Wilder said. “That goes for (Marc) McNulty, (Stefan) Scougall, (Matt) Done and (James) Wilson too. They all did that. (Chris) Hussey was out injured. But all of those lads have pushed others forward. So it’s important that competition is there.”
“Yes, we’ve walked away,” Wilder added. “We’re not a feeder club for anybody. We like to think we can offer something. We did that with Joe, showed him life away from Manchester United, the pressure of playing in front of 20,000 and a different way of training too. We offered him something. Arguably some of our best bits of business have been done in the loan market so we’ll look at embellishing, but only embellishing, that way again.”
Nevertheless, Wilder is aware that allowing his managerial rivals to effectively dictate United’s team selections could have a detrimental effect upon both results and team spirit; something he has worked assiduously to create behind the scenes.
“If I took someone and they had to play, what would their attitude be like? You’d lose respect in the dressing room too, from every part,” he said. “We’ll be the ones in charge of what we do.”