Sheffield United's summer transfer plans laid bare after Chris Wilder's recruitment demand

Sheffield United close to recruitment appointment after "extensive" search to help Blades thrive in transfer market
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Chris Wilder has reiterated the importance of targeting players who fit the profile of Sheffield United this summer as he gears up for what he has already described as the most important transfer window at Bramall Lane in a decade. The Blades could lose as many as 18 players if they are relegated, with further sales expected to plug the financial shortfall.

The Blades are not yet throwing in the towel in terms of securing their Premier League status, ahead of Thursday night's trip to Anfield, but also have one eye on the summer with a host of players out of contract and loan players set to return to their parent clubs. United are understood to have offered former player and coach Jamie Hoyland the chance to help shape their recruitment with a key role, after the departure of former transfer chief Paul Mitchell earlier this year.

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Any new recruitment staff will work closely with Wilder, with the understanding of what makes this club tick high on the list of prerequisites. But Wilder also recognises that knowledge of United's culture is not the be-all and end-all, pointing to the example of Londoner Tony Currie's status as United's greatest-ever player and a revered figure around Bramall Lane to this day.

"Something that has been talked about at length by supporters - people that I meet in the street and bump into - is culture, personality, what they know about the football club," Wilder said. "And I think you'll see with the appointments, we've got people who understand the culture, understand what we're after and understand what a Sheffield United player is. This is what, for me, drives us forward into the future.

"But don't pigeon-hole it and think: 'He has to come from Manor Top and he has to support Sheffield United and he's got about five Sheff United tattoos on him, so that's a perfect Sheff United player.' It hasn't been that. Our greatest-ever player is from London, so it doesn't have to be that way. But there are certain characteristics that have to be identified and the people that identify them and help us with that recruitment will understand the pathway that we want to go down."

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Mitchell unearthed some real gems in the transfer market during his time at Bramall Lane and with a huge summer rebuild on the cards, United will likely be shopping in similar markets as they look to extract maximum value for their cash. "First and foremost they've got to understand where we are and what markets we're looking at and looking to get players from," said Wilder of the new recruitment hires.

"From a profile point of view, the players we're after and physically, technically and tactically. And most importantly from a mentality and personality point of view, they have to know and they have to work with coaches and managers.

"It's no good them identifying players if we feel that we can't work with them, the coaches can't work with them and the manager can't work with them. There are a lot of moving parts in that but it's one we'll work closely with and I'm sure we'll have a positive outcome on that."

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