Last week it was reported that Sheffield United were interested in Brentford striker Ollie Watkins, and now there has been an update on their pursuit of the player.
According to Sky Sports, fellow Premier League side Aston Villa, who are preparing their first bid for the player, are now favourites to sign the forward after the Bees placed a price tag of £25m on Watkins. Crystal Palace are also monitoring the situation.
However this valuation appears to be too steep for the Blades and they will now look for different attacking options to bring to the club.
Last season, the 24-year-old had a terrific season at Brentford in the Championship as he played 49 times, including in the play-offs, and scored 26 goals whilst also supplying three assists, per WhoScored. His confidence in front of goal is further highlighted by the fact that he averaged 2.7 shots and 1.5 key passes per game.
He looks to be a prolific striker with a lot of potential but it is understandable to see why the Blades might pull out of this deal as it seems quite a risk to spend £25m on a player from the division below, irrespective of his quality. If there is more than one club interested, this might cause a bidding war and increase his price even more.
The Blades also might be pulling out of the deal based on past experiences, as last season they bought Oli McBurnie from the Championship for £17.19m and he had a good first season, becoming the top scorer at the club in 2019/20. However, he still only netted six goals and this might have highlighted to Chris Wilder that it takes time for a striker to adapt to the quality of the Premier League.
If Watkins was available for a lesser amount, then Sheffield United may go back in for him, but at £25m, it is understandable why the Yorkshire club don’t want to take the risk.
Blades fans, is £25m too much to justify paying for Watkins? Comment below with your views!
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