What Aston Villa’s Conor Hourihane said about making Sheffield United switch permanent

Conor Hourihane would be open to making his loan spell at Bramall Lane permanent, regardless of what division Sheffield United are in next season.

Thursday, 5th May 2022, 1:46 pm

Hourihane, who scored his first goal for the Blades in Friday’s 3-1 win against QPR, will see his current deal at parent club Aston Villa expire at the end of the season.

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The Republic of Ireland international, aged 31, has made 29 appearances in red and white this term, including 15 starts.

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Conor Hourihane of Sheffield United (photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images).

“I’m open to it, to whatever comes my way,” 31-year-old Hourihane said ahead of Saturday’s visit of Fulham.

"I’ve enjoyed my season here. I have known Hecky (Paul Heckingbottom, manager) from previous, I’m very fond of him as a person and as a manager so we’ll just wait and see.”

“It’s not about me thinking on my time now, it’s about thinking for the weekend first.”

Hourihane was a key member of the Barnsley side promoted to the Championship via the play-offs under Heckingbottom during the 2015/16 season.

He was brought to Bramall Lane by previous boss Slaviša Jokanović, but has continued to be involved since the Serb’s dismissal.

Asked if he’d still consider making his move permanent if United failed in their bid to bounce back to the Premier League at the first attempt, Hourihane said: “I’d be open to it.

"It’s been an up and down season for myself, I didn’t play as much at the start, played a bit when Hecky took over and haven’t played as much as I would have liked recently.

“But over the course of the season I feel like I’ve contributed and enjoyed it so I’m definitely open to things.”