Sheffield United: Blades stay in Freeman hunt

Kieron Freeman

Kieron Freeman

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Sheffield United are continuing to monitor Kieron Freeman’s situation at Derby County despite having a bid for the Wales under-21 international rejected by the Championship club.

Nigel Clough, whose side open their pre-season programme at Burton Albion this afternoon, approached his former employers about the possibility of signing Freeman last week after learning he can leave the iPro Stadium.

United initially proposed brokering another temporary agreement after signing the defender on loan earlier this year but, as The Star recently revealed, County would prefer to offload the player permanently as Steve McClaren looks to reshape the squad he inherited from Clough 10 months ago.

Quashing reports that he has completely abandoned plans to recruit Freeman, the United manager said: “We made an enquiry about Kieron but we’re moving forward with Craig (Alcock).

You don’t know what might happen in the next few weeks but, if nothing does, then we’re perfectly happy with Craig anyway, which is why we brought him in.”

Having seen Alcock become the eighth new arrival at Bramall Lane this summer, Clough confirmed Harrison McGahey will start the 2014/15 in United colours. A tribunal is expected to decide the level of compensation Blackpool will receive for the 18-year-old centre-half.

Clough said: “Harrison is a big, strong defender and there are a number of similar characters at Bramall Lane from whom he can learn his trade.

“He has potential, that’s what we see in him.”