Sheffield United Closing In On £1.5 Million-Rated Star

Sheffield United are set to complete the signing of Jamie Shackleton, following his release from Leeds United. The midfielder passed his medical earlier today, as per the Football Insider. 

The academy graduate has been at Leeds since the age of seven, making 79 senior appearances for the club, scoring twice. He made his debut in 2018 aged 18, coming off the bench for Marco Bielsa’s side in a 4-1 win over Derby County in a week that would see his career take off.

Just two days after his first taste of men’s football, the now 24-year-old signed his first professional contract, putting pen to paper to stay in West Yorkshire on a 3-year deal. Shackleton was rewarded for his loyalty to The Whites with his first senior start just a day later as he lined up as a right-back in a 2-1 victory over Bolton Wanderers.

Appearances kept coming thick and fast, with the Englishman proving to be a reliable option for Bielsa to bring off the bench in games. Described by former academy director Neil Redfearn as ‘very tenacious’, Shackleton lived up to that evaluation, all while providing depth in several key positions during Leeds’s title-winning season in 2020.

Off the back of an unforgettable season for everyone at Elland Road, the versatile midfielder put pen to paper again in August 2020, signing a four-year deal that brought him up to this summer. However, both parties failed to agree this time around, leading Shackleton to explore his options before the upcoming campaign.

In the 22/23 season Shackleton did go to Millwall on a season long loan, where he added 36 appearances to his tally. However, his involvement since coming back from that spell could be a reason why Farke is happy to continue without him, after just playing the midfielder 11 times since his return from East London.

Sheffield United look all but confirmed to pounce on a potential bargain deal, valued at £1.5 million according to Transfermarkt, the Blades won’t pay a penny for his services, which will please manager Chris Wilder as he looks to overhaul his squad after a dismal return to the top flight last season.

Recording just 16 points, and conceding a staggering 104 goals, there’s no hiding the squad’s lack of quality. Shackleton will look to kick start a very busy few months in South Yorkshire, by becoming United’s first summer signing, as noisy neighbours Sheffield Wednesday are already off the mark with their business.

Writer’s View

There’ll be no way to mask Jamie Shackleton’s disappointment following his release from Leeds United. Every young lad who grows up playing the beautiful game will always want to be the star man of their boyhood club. However, for his career this move will certainly give him a new lease of life, providing him with the opportunity to fire Sheffield United back up to the top flight.

From a Blades perspective, this seems like the sort of smart business the club needs to make in the state it’s in at the minute. After already confirming the release of six first team players, including John Egan and fan favourite Chris Basham, Wilder needs to rebuild the core of his backline. An area of the pitch where as a team they excelled in during their most successful season this century, in which they finished 9th in the Premier League just four years ago.

Shackleton would most likely slot into the right side of that defensive cohort, but can provide cover in midfield, as well as in central defence. Making him an ideal first signing in the infamous red and white stripes at Bramall Lane.

 

 

 

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