What an incredible year it has been to be a Sheffield United supporter.
Following the disappointment of missing out on the play-offs last May, a fantastic summer of recruitment saw Chris Wilder bring in the likes of David McGoldrick, Oliver Norwood and Dean Henderson who all played a pivotal role in helping the club launch a sustained bid for automatic promotion this season.
With Leeds United being their main rivals for a top-two finish in the Championship, the Blades landed the decisive blow in April by securing three consecutive victories which guaranteed their return to the top-flight of English football after 12 years away.
Having ended the 2018/19 campaign with a 2-2 draw at Stoke City, Wilder will undoubtedly be looking to bolster his squad ahead of next season and so it is of no surprise that United have been linked with a move for one of Blackburn Rovers’ key players.
According to Sun reporter Alan Nixon (as quoted by Football League World), the Blades are reportedly looking into the possibility of signing centre-back Darragh Lenihan from the Riversiders with the only stumbling block being the price they may have to pay.
Keeping this rumour in mind, let’s compare the Republic of Ireland international with one of United’s current defensive aces…
A product of Blackburn’s youth academy, Darragh Lenihan has developed immeasurably under the guidance of manager Tony Mowbray and topped off a fine 2018/19 campaign with a goal against Swansea City last week.
A regular starter for the Riversiders, it is clear that the 25-year-old has the talent to make the step-up to the Premier League yet it may take a lot of persuading by the Blades to tempt him away from Lancashire given his loyalties to the club.
However, if United can convince Lenihan to move to Bramall Lane, it is not guaranteed that he will slot straight into Wilder’s side as he would have to fight off intense competition from the likes of Jack O’Connell and John Egan for a starting role next season.
TT GRADE: B
A hero amongst Blades supporters, Chris Basham enjoyed arguably the best season of his career to date this year with his outstanding levels of consistency being one of the key reasons why his side achieved promotion to the Premier League.
Although primarily a central defender, the 30-year-old’s fantastic versatility has also allowed him to deliver a number of stand-out performances as a midfielder for United with his most notable contribution coming in a 1-0 victory against Leeds in March.
With a season in the top flight just over the horizon for Basham, the former Blackpool ace will be confident that he can play a prominent role in ensuring that his side have enough to compete with England’s best club sides.
TT GRADE: A
Although Darragh Lenihan is arguably playing the best football of his career at Blackburn Rovers, the Blades should steer clear of signing the defender as they already have better options in his position at Bramall Lane.
With Chris Basham being more than capable of leading United’s back-three to success next year, Wilder should consider using the funds available to him in the summer to bolster his squad in areas that need the most improvement rather than wasting them on Lenihan.
Blades fans, should Wilder consider making a move for Lenihan in the summer? Join the discussion by commenting below.
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience