Sheffield United appoint familiar face to key transfers role ahead of 'most important window in a decade'

Exc: Boyhood Blade and former player set to shape Sheffield United's huge summer after being appointed to key role
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Sheffield United have appointed boyhood Blade and former player Jamie Hoyland to a key recruitment position ahead of a huge summer in the transfer market, The Star understands. The 58-year-old has previously held a coaching role with United's academy before making the transition to becoming a respected scout.

After spells working for the Premier League and Football Association Hoyland began a long spell at Everton, working his way up from U23 head of recruitment to the Goodison Park club's lead scout. During his time at Everton he was involved in the signings of Dominic Calvert-Lewin, from United, and Jarrad Branthwaite, amongst others, before leaving last summer after seven years.

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Hoyland is since understood to have held a role at West Ham but joins the Blades ahead of a huge summer in the transfer market. As many as 18 players could depart at the end of this season while senior United officials expect at least two more to leave if the Blades are, as looks likely, relegated from the Premier League. The appointment of Hoyland is the latest step in United's restructuring of the recruitment department, which saw its previous head Paul Mitchell depart just under a month ago.

With United having no plans to appoint a director of football or equivalent position Hoyland's relationship with boss Chris Wilder will be key as the pair look to rebuild the squad. The pair were teammates at United under Dave Bassett but knew each other even before then, although Hoyland's appointment was made on the strength of his impressive track record and ability rather than just ties to the club or manager.

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"Regardless of what division we're in, it will be the most important window for the last nine or 10 years," said Wilder. "We have to get it right in a lot of ways. Obviously the ability but most importantly for me is from a cultural and attitude point of view, in terms of what this team needs to get back to looking like.

"It's a massive window for us. A lot of players going back who have been on loan and a lot out of contract, and maybe a few sales too. It's a huge window we have to get right. We have to go through the process as well, get the best people for the job who will work with me and the coaching staff and the football club, to help identify the best players for the club."

The son of former United player Tommy, Hoyland took his first football steps away from his home city at Manchester City and Bury before being lured back to United in the summer of 1990 as their record signing at the time following promotion back to the old First Division. He played over 100 times for United in the top flight before moving on to Burnley after the Blades were cruelly relegated from the Premier League in 1994.

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