Sheffield United first expressed an interest in Sam Winnall more than 12 months ago, The Star understands, after it emerged the Sheffield Wednesday centre-forward continues to attract admiring glances from Bramall Lane.
Chris Wilder, the United manager, has reportedly enquired about Winnall's availability as he presses ahead with plans to increase his attacking options before the new Championship season begins on August 4.
But it is believed Wilder also made an approach for the 27-year-old last summer, only to be discouraged by Wednesday's asking price. With Jordan Rhodes yesterday leaving Hillsborough on loan, it remains unclear if United's neighbours will consider parting company with another striker or even lower their valuation of a player who has appeared for them less than 20 times since arriving from Barnsley in January last year.
Winnall, who spent last term on loan with Derby County, features on a list of potential signings identified by Wilder and staff. Southampton's Sam Gallagher and Scott Hogan of Aston Villa are confirmed targets, with the latter being granted permission to miss his club's summer training camp in Portugal. Steve Bruce, Wilder's counterpart at Villa Park, yesterday insisted this was to accelerate the player's recovery from an injury but acknowledged the English Football League's Profit and Sustainability regulations will force him to sell players.
"Scott Hogan has got a bit of a groin (injury),” Bruce said. "He had it most of the summer so we’ve decided to leave him at home to get treatment. Let’s hope he can make a bit of a recovery in the next week so we can put him through his paces as well."
United are also spending the week in the Algarve, where they are scheduled to face Maritimo in a friendly tomorrow. Supporters can gain free entry to the match, which takes place at the Bela Vista Estadio in Parchal. (Kick-off 7pm local time).