Sheffield United: Blades old boy Paul Coutts tips this Bramall Lane star to shine in the Premier League

Paul Coutts has tipped his former Bramall Lane teammate John Fleck to shine in the Premier League with Sheffield United next season.

By Danny Hall
Sunday, 16 June, 2019, 10:19
John Fleck and Paul Coutts of Sheffield Utd celebrate victory over Wednesday at Hillsborough in September 2017. Picture: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

Coutts, who left United at the end of their promotion season after finding first-team opportunities limited due to the form of Fleck and Oliver Norwood, made the prediction after revealing he has turned down a number of approaches from clubs as he waits for his next move.

Coutts struggled to regain his place after breaking his leg at Burton Albion in November 2017, an injury that coincided with the unravelling of United’s promotion push that season.

He returned to full fitness just under a year later, but couldn’t displace Norwood in midfield as United sealed automatic promotion ahead of rivals Leeds United.

And the Scot said of Fleck: "John is probably the best player I have played with.

“A great left foot, a great lad. He was one of the hot prospects to come out of Rangers, he has obviously got the pedigree to be a top player.

"He had a couple of stagnant years at Coventry, but the move to Sheffield United has been the best thing for him, the manager gets the best out of him, so I would expect to see him do well."

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Coutts, who joined Peterborough from hometown club Cove Rangers in 2008, also represented Preston North End and Derby County before arriving at Bramall Lane in 2015.

The midfielder was initially placed on the transfer list when boss Chris Wilder took charge of United but, in a remarkable turnaround, helped the Blades storm to the League One title and established himself as a firm fans’ favourite.

"I have had a couple of offers, which haven't been quite right," Coutts added, in an interview with the BBC.

"It's the first time in my career that I have been out of contract, you are looking at the phone all the time. Something will come up I'm sure.

"I couldn't go another season without playing. You have got all the glitz and glamour of the Premier League, which would have been amazing to be involved in - it has been an ambition of mine the whole time I have been in England - but I just felt leaving was the right thing to do."