Sheffield United: Transfer chaos puts Bramall Lane on red alert

Ethan Ebanks-Landell has returned to Wolverhampton Wanderers.Pic credit should read: Robin Parker/Sportimage
Ethan Ebanks-Landell has returned to Wolverhampton Wanderers.Pic credit should read: Robin Parker/Sportimage

Sheffield United are deciding whether to submit a bid for Wolverhampton Wanderers’ defender Ethan Ebanks-Landell after his future at Molineux was plunged into doubt following the departure of manager Paul Lambert.

Sheffield United are deciding whether to submit a bid for Wolverhampton Wanderers’ defender Ethan Ebanks-Landell after his future at Molineux was plunged into doubt following the departure of manager Paul Lambert.

The defender features on a list of potential targets, which also included Ryan Bennett before he joined Wolves yesterday, compiled by the League One champions after spending last season on loan in South Yorkshire.

Despite failing to sign Ebanks-Landell permanently earlier this year, United have continued to monitor his situation closely and could be tempted to test Wolves’ resolve by making another offer for the 24-year-old’s services.

Lambert, who was instrumental in persuading the player to sign a new long-term contract, left the Black Country earlier this week following a disagreement with owners Fosun about the club’s transfer policy.

The Chinese conglomerate and investment company, which purchased Wolves from Steve Morgan last year, is set to hand agent Jorge Mendes control of recruitment matters with Nuno Espirito Santo replacing Lambert as head coach.

Paul Lambert has left Wolverhampton Wanderers

Paul Lambert has left Wolverhampton Wanderers

Perhaps aware of the politicking behind the scenes, Ebanks-Landell refused to rule-out the possibility of returning to United next term when questioned on the subject recently. Admitting that “anything could happen” when his agreement with Chris Wilder’s team expired, Ebanks-Landell also acknowledged he had improved as a player after making 34 appearances during his eight month stay in South Yorkshire.

“Just playing games helps you improve,” he said.

“Even if you aren’t doing well, you learn so much more if you’re actually involved.”

With that in mind, Ebanks-Landell is unlikely to be enthused by the thought of reverting to being a squad player next season.

Ethan Ebanks-Landell performed well at Bramall Lane: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

Ethan Ebanks-Landell performed well at Bramall Lane: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

Despite impressing Lambert during an assessment period at Wolves’ Sir Jack Hayward Training Ground in December, the Scot’s sacking, coupled with the fact that Rio Ave centre-half Roderick Miranda looks set to join former Blades target Bennett at Wolves next week, means Ebanks-Landell is effectively starting again from scratch.

Miranda, a member of the Mendes stable, will reportedly command a £2.6m fee after agreeing to leave the Estádio dos Arcos.

United held talks with former Norwich City defender Bennett about a potential move north as Wilder pressed ahead with the overhaul of a side which finished 14 points clear of its nearest rivals last season.

“Transfer discussions, initial bids and valuations of players are an on-going process, we have to be patient at this time of year but we won’t let it drag on too long,” the United manager said.

“If we think something isn’t going to get done then we’ll move on and look at something else.

“We won’t be waiting or hanging around.”

Meanwhile, phase three of United’s season ticket drive begins today. Adult tickets on The Kop, which had cost £317 and £346.50 during phases one and two, are now priced at £378.

Junior tickets start at £67.

Purchases can be made in person at United’s box office, online via www.sufc.talent-sport.co.uk or by telephone on 0114 253 7200 (option 1).