McCabe ensures Blades are fully funded

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in the wake of relegation are worth recalling now.

McCabe, who is to be congratulated for his courageous commitment to Wilson on all the evidence so far, said in response to questions about a £12m wage bill: “I’ve got to do whatever it takes.

“I’d love to believe we can sell three or four players and I don’t have to contribute. . . but the reality is that if push comes to shove I’ve got to make sure the club is properly funded.”

Darius Henderson and Mark Yeates have made the only significant exits in wage terms.

The future of striker Ched Evans, who was also in line for a cash-freeing move, has been effectively frozen by the player facing rape charges.

When a not insignificant outlay on signings is also considered, it all leaves McCabe carrying an increasingly heavy burden.

With some United players being virtually unaffordable for Championship outfits, the chairman’s load can only be eased by a successful promotion bid.

Of course, there is always the January window when he can take stock based on the league position, but if all goes to plan there will be even stronger reasons to hold firm.

Currently, the ankle injury ruling out Nick Montgomery for around a month could prove a blessing in disguise for United, if not the player.

It lowered the risk of a late bid for his services and manager Wilson also has natural cover for Montgomery’s position in Michael Doyle who successfully anchored Leeds’ promotion from League One two years ago.

In that respect, Doyle’s aptitude for the role made Monty arguably the most expendable of Bramall Lane’s assets.

He is one player who would not need to have been replaced like-for-like while freeing up pressure on the wage bill.

But it has always been the case that Wilson would prefer to keep his midfield warhorse and circumstances may have been conspired to achieve just that.

The Blades look to maintain their unbeaten league start at home to Bury on Saturday as one of three clubs locked together on 13 points at the top of the table.