This article forms part of our Total Duds feature series, which is where Football Transfer Tavern takes a look at a player who has disappointed since being signed, using statistical figures and statements from pundits to illustrate how ill-judged the transfer decision has been.
When Sheffield United signed Dean Hammond in October 2015, there was plenty of excitement around Bramall Lane.
The midfielder was an experienced player, who had played in the Championship and Premier League in the previous two seasons for Leicester City (Transfermarkt).
So when he dropped down to League One to join the Blades, many thought that it was something of a coup.
Manager Nigel Adkins was one of those, and after signing the player he said: “I cannot speak highly enough of him as a player and a person, he sets high standards both on and off the pitch.,” (via BBC Sport).
He was brought in to dominate the midfield for Sheffield United, and lead them promotion back to the Championship.
Unfortunately, what unfolded was an unhappy season in which he completely failed to live up to expectations.
Whilst he was a regular in the side, starting 30 games in the league (Transfermarkt), he struggled to make many meaningful contributions.
He scored just a couple of goals (Transfermarkt), looked unfit, uninterested and was just generally awful (as noted by fan site View from the John Street at the time) as the Blades sunk to a thoroughly disappointing 11th place finish in League One.
However, despite the fact that Adkins had been sacked and new manager Chris Wilder didn’t seem to want him, Hammond opted to activate a clause in his loan deal which automatically earned him a further one-year contract at Sheffield United (sufc.co.uk).
This would surely have infuriated fans, who may have just wanted rid of the midfielder. But the club wasted no time in agreeing a settlement which ensured that he didn’t end up returning to South Yorkshire – much to the delight of the majority of the Blades faithful.
He may have only been at the club for seven months but Hammond will no doubt go down as one of the least popular players to pull on a Sheffield United shirt in recent memory.
Sheffield United fans, how poor was Dean Hammond during his time at Bramall Lane? Let us know your thoughts on him in the comments below…
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