Sheffield United's Transfer Window: Grading the Blades' Summer Business

It's been a concerning start to their second season back in the Premier League for Sheffield United fans, but there's a long way to go and by no means does it spell disaster just yet.

Chris Wilder has performed miracles with the Blades as head coach and did so once again last season, taking the side to a ninth place finish. It's never as easy the second time round, however, and this season will prove to be the ultimate sink or swim campaign for United.

Reinforcements were no doubt needed, but there are still question marks as to whether it's a squad that can stay afloat in the English top flight. The Blades had to replace one of the league's best goalkeepers from last season which immediately put them on the back foot, as well as addressing other problem areas.

How exactly did they do in the transfer market? There's only one way to find out. Here's how 90min have graded Sheffield United's summer transfer business.


Rhian Brewster

Signed From: Sarpsborg 08 (undisclosed)

Grade: C+

Coulibaly isn't a name fans other than United supporters will have heard of, but the midfielder is just 19 and is highly rated by those who have seen him play.

He's been immediately sent out on loan to Belgium upon his arrival, meaning his impact this season will be insignificant, but with success out in Europe, he may well find himself back in the plans in Yorkshire should he find form and a work permit.

It's another young signing with an eye towards the future, which nobody can grumble at.


Ismaila Coulibaly

Transferred to: Beerschot (loan)

Grade: B

Name rings a bell, doesn't it?

Coulibaly was out of the door as quickly as he went through it at Sheffield United, heading to the Belgian top flight with Beerschot on a three-year loan. Yes, three years.

A three-year loan is a bit unheard of, truth be told, but it's better to loan him to one club - who happen to be owned by Blades owner Prince Abdullah - rather than have him flung across Europe with no real consistency in an attempt to gain a work permit.

It's smart business and a win-win for the club. Red Bull Sheffield United.

Leon Clarke

Veteran striker Leon Clarke has left for pastures new in League One | James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Transferred to: Shrewsbury Town (free)

Grade: A

Now 35, Clarke has enjoyed his best years. He's been a loyal servant to the Blades since 2016 and was ideal as the experienced head in the Championship, but now was the best time to move on.

Clarke did make his Premier League debut aged 34 last season which will always be one for him to cherish, but he had to move in order to find regular football - he's been surplus to requirements since the start of 2019.

Best move for all parties.

Ravel Morrison