Sheffield United: Summit meeting convened to discuss how to respond to Arsenal's bid for Aaron Ramsdale
Sheffield United’s hierarchy are scheduled to meet over the weekend to discuss Arsenal’s interest in Aaton Ramsdale, as the Championship club plots its response to what is expected to be a £30m bid for the goalkeeper.
Having spent more than a month monitoring the goalkeeper and using intermediaries to investigate his situation ar Bramall Lane, Mikel Arteta’s employers are finally preparing to make official contact ahead of what could be a protracted of wills.
The Basque, who made Ramsdale one of his leading transfer targets even before he was called-up by England for this summer’s rescheduled Euro 2020 tournament, is convinced the 23-year-old must be tempted by the prospect of a move to north London - particularly after United were relegated last season.
But with Ramsdale showing no signs of agitating for a transfer and new manager Slavisa Jokanovic determined to retain Ramsdale’s services, United are poised to reject Arsenal’s opening offer. Earlier this summer, when The Star reported news of Arteta’s interest, they used a back channel of their own to confirm it would take a cheque of at least £40m to lure them to the negotiating table.
Arsenal have no intention of meeting United’s asking price, with West Bromwich Albion’s Sam Johnstone being lined-up as a possible alternative.
But Ramsdale, United’s reigning player of the year, is still Arteta’s preferred choice. That has prompted sources in the capital to claim Arsenal will then return with a slightly improved package possibly containing an invitation to loan some of their most promising young talents.
Whether or not that proves attractive to Jokanovic, who has already compiled a list of his own targets, is yet to be seen.But the Serb has already made it clear he wants Ramsdale to help United try and regain top-flight status at the first attempt.
If Ramsdale does move on then AFC Bournemouth, where he spent three years before rejoining United last summer, are entitled to 15 percent if any fee they receive.
A graduate of their Steelphalt Academy youth programme, Ramsdale turned professional with United but was sold for just under £1m to help fund what proved to be a successful push for the League One title in 2017. United paid around 18 times that amount to bring him back following the end of Dean Henderson’s loan from Manchester United.