Sheffield United player refusing to sign new contract despite 18-month attempt amid "difficult situation"

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Sheffield United owner "on same page" as boss Chris Wilder when it comes to expiring player contracts

Prince Abdullah has acknowledged Sheffield United's "difficult situation" as a host of key players enter what could be their final six months at Bramall Lane. As many as 16 contracted players could leave the club in the summer, as well as United's three current loanees.

Depending on your perspective, that either presents a huge concern or a good opportunity for a clear-out. United are hoping to add another loanee in striker Ben Brereton Diaz to their squad to kickstart their January recruitment after opening contract talks with a number of senior players, including Wes Foderingham and Oli McBurnie, earlier in the season.

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Those two are now free to discuss pre-contract moves to clubs outside England while teammates including George Baldock, John Egan and Ollie Norwood are also scheduled to become free agents in the summer, as things stand. United have options in their favour with some of the players while the process is complicated by the fact that the relegation battlers do not know which division they will be competing in next season.

Speaking recently boss Chris Wilder insisted that the situation was "not a concern to me at all" despite admitting that "in an ideal world we wouldn't like as many out of contract." And the owner offered his own perspective on the situation on fan YouTube channel BladesRamble. Asked if he had any concerns about the number of first-teamers who could leave in the summer, the Prince said: "No, because we're talking with some of them right now.

"It's a very difficult situation because some of them, if we go into the Championship you would want them to stay. Maybe if we stay in the Premier League, you think that you have to move in a different direction. I think me and Chris, when it comes to this topic, are on the same page and of course, it’s not all up to us. I don’t want to go through names but one of the players, we’ve been trying to renew him now for one and a half years and he doesn’t want to renew."

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Although the Prince did not identify the player in question, striker Daniel Jebbison is one member of their squad that United have been speaking to for some time about a new deal. The England U20 international has not played since last May through a combination of injury and a health injury and as things stand, is set to walk away in the summer. "Jebbison is one of the players we tried to renew," the Prince confirmed. "I think Chris talked to him and talked to his family and we will try everything to keep him. He's a good young player and we'll see what happens."

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