Sheffield United’s already thin squad has suffered another setback with the news that John Fleck will be sidelined due to injury.
Fleck sustained what seemed like a minor knock during a pre-season game against Girona, but it has now turned out to be more serious than initially thought. Manager Paul Heckingbottom had already mentioned that the Scotland midfielder wouldn’t be fit for the final friendly against Stuttgart, but according to Alan Nixon, the situation is even worse than anticipated.
Nixon has confirmed that Fleck has suffered another leg fracture, a similar injury that kept him out for a significant part of the previous season. This comes as a bitter blow to Heckingbottom’s plans, especially after awarding Fleck a new deal during the summer.
The Blades are facing a shortage of midfielders, with only Oli Norwood, Sander Berge, Ben Osborn, and Anis Slimane available in that position. Youngster Oliver Arblaster has been loaned out, but Harrison Neal and Andre Brooks are still at the club, and although they are development players, this injury could see them play a bigger role than originally imagined.
Sheffield United have also been linked with Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Vinícius Souza this week, with the former on the free agents list, and the latter could cost the Blades around £15m, per rumours.