Sheffield United: McCabe hands Blades a £35m lift

Kevin McCabe says his family wrote off loans as part of the deal to bring Prince Abdullah bin Mosaad to the club
Kevin McCabe says his family wrote off loans as part of the deal to bring Prince Abdullah bin Mosaad to the club

Kevin McCabe and his family wrote-off £35m worth of loans to Sheffield United as part of the deal which saw Prince Abdullah bin Mosaad become the League One club’s co-owner earlier this season.

The Star can reveal that McCabe also assumed responsibility for certain undisclosed liabilities, believed to include severance payments to former managers and players, in order to help secure the Saudi Arabian’s investment.

The arrival of Prince Abdullah, who reciprocated by agreeing to pump an indisclosed sum into United’s coffers, was described by officials at Bramall Lane as a potential “game-changer” when it was announced three months ago.

McCabe’s gesture, which does not appear on United’s latest set of accounts, means those monies can be used to strengthen Nigel Clough’s squad as the former England international attempts to guide it away from the relegation zone.

Speaking after Saturday’s victory over Bristol City, which lifted United to 21st in the table, Clough indicated he does not plan to make wholesale changes during the January transfer window.

However, trialist Keith Fahey could be offered a contract after being invited to train at the Redtooth Academy.

“Keith has been working with us and he’ll continue to do that,” Clough said. “Then, we’ll assess the situation and take a decision on him.”

“We’re keeping Keith busy and, as has been the case, he’ll be involved in the under-21 games,” Clough added. “He’s been working hard and will continue to do so.”

United, who return to action against Walsall tomorrow, recruited Jose Baxter and Florent Cuvelier from Oldham Athletic and Stoke City respectively following Prince Abdullah’s appointment to their board of directors.

Cardiff City’s Simon Lappin and Leeds’ Aidy White have also joined on loan ahead of Thursday’s deadline for emergency signings.

Both featured in Clough’s starting eleven at Ashton Gate as Aden Flint’s own goal handed United their first away victory in league competition since March.

“That was a magnificent victory, especially with the clean sheet,” Clough said. “You could see how much it meant to everybody out there at the end. We have to scrap and fight for everything because we’re in the bottom four.

“Getting out of that is our only priority at the moment.”