Sheffield United: Boss reveals what could persuade him to sign another overseas player from Russia

After becoming the first club in England to exploit a FIFA directive allowing overseas players in Russia to suspend their contracts following Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine, Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom has admitted Filip Uremovic is likely to be the only new arrival at Bramall Lane this month.

Monday, 4th April 2022, 3:05 pm

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Uremovic, the Croatia defender, agreed a short-term deal with United during the recent international break after deciding to leave Rubin Kazan following the outbreak of hostilities in eastern Europe.

Heckingbottom has until Thursday to draft in another reinforcement from the Russian Premier League after the world governing body created a new ‘transfer window’ in order to protect the “integrity” of domestic competitions.

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Speaking after confirming United’s captain and leading goalscorer Billy Sharp will miss tomorrow’s game against Queens Park Rangers as he continues to recover from a hamstring injury, Heckingbottom told The Star: “Unless we can find a 25 goal a season centre-forward out there then no, I don’t see it happening. That will be it.

“Joking aside, we were delighted to bring Filip in because of the situation and we were able to do it quickly because the boys here already knew him.”

Speaking soon after the 25-year-old’s arrival, Heckingbottom confirmed United had been monitoring Uremovic’s progress for “a couple of seasons” but had been unable to put together the type of financial package required to lure him away.

With Charlie Goode set to remain at Brentford for the remainder of the campaign - Heckingbottom revealing the prognosis the on-loan centre-half initially received after being diagnosed with a cartilage issue has “now changed” - Uremovic could make his United debut when Mark Warburton’s ninth placed side visit South Yorkshire. United slipped to eighth in the table, a point behind Blackburn Rovers in sixth, after being beaten by Stoke City over the weekend.

Filip Uremovic could represent Sheffield United against Queens Park Rangers at Bramall Lane: Jonathan Moscrop/Sportimage

After naming Uremovic on the bench for that match, Heckingbottom said: “If Filip gets opportunities, he’s got to grasp it and hit the ground running. We certainly needed that extra help. If there are any further injuries, then we also needed to bring him here and have him here.”

Paul Heckingbottom, the Sheffield United manager: Cameron Smith/Getty Images