Sheffield United fans reassured ‘magician’ Iliman Ndiaye future won’t follow Aaron Ramsdale transfer path

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Sheffield United do not expect Iliman Ndiaye to down tools or become affected if he does not seal a lucrative Premier League move during this transfer window.

Ndiaye was over the weekend linked with top-flight strugglers Everton after a rapid rise to prominence saw him become a key man in United’s promotion bid and make his World Cup debut with Senegal late last year.

Despite figures of £15m and £22m being mentioned, boss Paul Heckingbottom has recommended to the United board that they hold firm over their star men, whatever offers are received this window, with promotion to the Premier League in their grasp.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Heckingbottom’s men go into their FA Cup clash at Wrexham this weekend second in the Championship table and effectively 14 points clear of third-placed Watford – whose manager, Slaven Bilic, has admitted that his side have to look to win every one of their remaining games to have a chance of catching the Blades and Burnley.

United’s Ndiaye stance is not thought to have been materially affected by recent confirmation that they have been placed under a transfer embargo by the EFL, after failing to pay a transfer instalment for one of their players.

A club statement suggested the issue could be resolved this week, with boss Heckingbottom adding that things could change instantly ahead of next weekend’s transfer deadline.

Anel Ahmedhodzic of Sheffield United celebrates scoring with Oliver McBurnie and lliman Ndiaye: Simon Bellis / SportimageAnel Ahmedhodzic of Sheffield United celebrates scoring with Oliver McBurnie and lliman Ndiaye: Simon Bellis / Sportimage
Anel Ahmedhodzic of Sheffield United celebrates scoring with Oliver McBurnie and lliman Ndiaye: Simon Bellis / Sportimage

But as clubs inevitably look to exploit the uncertainty surrounding Bramall Lane, over the embargo and ongoing takeover talks, United don’t expect a repeat of the Aaron Ramsdale scenario, which overshadowed their start to last season, with Ndiaye.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

After United were relegated from the Premier League, Ramsdale moved to Arsenal in a deal worth up to £30m and later conceded that he had gone on strike in a bid to force United’s hand.

“I think he has his head right, he's a very nice guy that's very calm,” teammate Anel Ahmedhodžić told The Star of Ndiaye.

“He likes to make jokes and stuff but he's the type of guy who will never think he's a god or anything like that. If he gets to the top, he will be the way he is now. Just one of us, you know?”

Ahmedhodžić suggested it was quite routine for players to not get distracted by transfer talk, adding: “You just put it to the side and don't think about it. It's more speculation for the people that follow.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

But it is clear that, either with United or without them, Ndiaye is heading towards the Premier League. No player in the Championship has contributed more than his 17 goal contributions, including 10 strikes and seven assists, and Ahmedhodžić added: "He's amazing.

“Sometimes, when we have a period of constant pressure against us, we can just give the ball to Ili and he will dribble past three or four players and give us breathing space.

"He's that type of player that can create something out of nothing. He's a magician. I think he can be at the top, top end of players in the world.”

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.