Sheffield United close in on Cameron Archer transfer as Aston Villa boss explains “good” move

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Blades closing in on top striker target

Sheffield United are closing in on the signing of Aston Villa starlet Cameron Archer, with Blades officials privately delighted about the deal they have negotiated for the England U21 international. United hope to tie up the move ahead of Sunday’s clash with Manchester City, after agreeing an £18.5m deal.

Archer was left out of Villa’s squad for their European clash with Hibs last night as a move to Bramall Lane developed. As The Star revealed recently Archer is a long-standing target of boss Paul Heckingbottom, with a move planned back in January before budget restrictions scuppered the chance of him joining United’s promotion push.

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Archer instead signed for Middlesbrough on loan and scored 11 times in 20 games, earning the chance to impress at Villa in pre-season. But boss Unai Emery reached the decision that Archer could continue his development elsewhere, although Villa will retain some sort of control over the player’s future due to a buy-back clause inserted into the deal.

“I spoke with Cameron Archer at the beginning of pre-season, and like every player, he needs to play and to progress,” Emery said. “He did very good work last year in the Championship with Middlesbrough. Now he has the opportunity to leave.

“I don’t know if it’s 100 per cent official, but if he leaves it is good for him and good for the club because we can take money from the transfer. Then, we are trying to get under control of the possibilities because we believe in him and I think we are close in the deal with those circumstances like we want.”

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