Sheffield United loan watch: A game of two halves for Luke Freeman as Nottingham Forest lose again and Rhys Norrington-Davies booked in Luton Town's defeat to arch rivals Watford

Sheffield United are now three games into the new campaign and, although it’s very early days, currently sit bottom of the Premier League following yesterday’s 1-0 defeat to Yorkshire rivals Leeds United at Bramall Lane.

Monday, 28th September 2020, 12:00 pm

But how did the players currently not part of Chris Wilder’s first team squad get on for their loan clubs at the weekend.

Let’s take a look.

Luke Freeman

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The 28-year-old attacker is currently on a season-long loan with Championship side Nottingham Forest, who have had a disappointing start to their league campaign having lost their opening three games and, worse still, have yet to register a goal.

Freeman – who joined United for a then club record £5m from Queens Park Rangers in the summer of 2019 – impressed for the Reds in their defeats to Rangers and Cardiff City but produced a quieter performance in the 1-0 reverse at Huddersfield Town on Friday evening.

Writing after the game, Nottinghamshire Live’s Sarah Clapson – who gave him a rating of five out of 10 – said of Freeman: “Much like most of his teammates, had a better first 45 minutes. All just felt a bit flat from the Reds after the break.”

Rhys Norrington-Davies

Luke Freeman, on loan from Sheffield United to Nottingham Forest, in action during the Reds' 1-0 defeat to Huddersfield Town on Friday evening. Photo: Nick Potts/PA Wire.
Luke Freeman, on loan from Sheffield United to Nottingham Forest, in action during the Reds' 1-0 defeat to Huddersfield Town on Friday evening. Photo: Nick Potts/PA Wire.

Twenty-one-year-old Norrington-Davies has joined Championship outfit Luton Town for the 2020/21 campaign – and has already produced some impressive displays for the Hatters.

However, the Wales under-21 international left-back was unable to help his side avoid defeat to bitter rivals Watford at Vicarage Road on Saturday – the first time the fixture between the two clubs had been played since April 2006 – and was also booked in injury time for a foul on Hornets striker Troy Deeney.

Jake Eastwood

The 23-year-old goalkeeper joined Scottish Premiership outfit Kilmarnock in July but suffered a thigh injury on his debut against Hibernian in early August and is currently receiving treatment back at United. He’s still thought to be a minimum of four weeks away from a return to action.

David Parkhouse

The Northern Ireland under-21 international forward signed for National League side Hartlepool United on loan until January earlier this month.

And Parkhouse, 20, who has yet to make a first-team appearance for United, scored for his new side in a 4-1 friendly win at Gateshead on Saturday.

Dominic Scurr, of the Hartlepool Mail, says the Blades striker has had a ‘solid pre-season’ and is in contention to start for Dave Challinor’s side when they host Aldershot in the scheduled National League opener on Saturday.

Tyler Smith

Striker Smith completed a deal to join League One outfit Swindon Town on a season-long loan last month.

The 21-year-old, who has not made a senior appearance for the Blades, scored on his debut for the Robins in their 3-1 win over Rochdale on the opening day of the season but was an unused substitute in the 4-2 defeat of Burton Albion at the County Ground on Saturday.

Marcus Dewhurst

Young goalkeeper Dewhurst re-joined League Two Carlisle United on a temporary basis until January 2021 at the end of last month.

The 19-year-old had previously joined the Cumbrians on-loan on deadline day last January, but failed to make a competitive appearance before Covid-19 brought about the suspension of league football in England.

Dewhurst was once again an unused substitute in Carlisle’s 1-0 defeat at Scunthorpe United on Saturday.

Ismaila Coulibaly

Mali under-20 midfielder Coulibaly joined United from Norwegian outfit Sarpsborg 08 earlier this month and was immediately sent out on loan to Belgian side Beerschot.

The 19-year-old was once again an unused substitute in Beerschot’s 3-2 win over lowly Waasland-Beveren on Saturday – a win which moves his new club up to third place in the Pro League.

Stephen Mallon

The Blades’ under-23 winger is currently on loan with League of Ireland Premier Division side Derry City but injury forced him to miss the 2-1 defeat to high-flying Bohemians on Friday night. Mallon will remain with the Candy Stripes until the end of the current campaign in October.

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