Sheffield United plotting move for pending free agent defender

According to TEAMtalk, Luton Town defender Gabriel Osho is on the shortlist of Sheffield United as they plan to improve their centre-back squad depth for next season.

The 25-year-old Nigerian defender started 21 times for the Hatters in the Premier League last term, helping the team achieve two clean sheets, he also added two top flight goals to his name.

It is thought that Rob Edwards wants Osho to remain at Kenilworth Road as they hope to achieve a bounce back promotion next term, however, he has not yet signed a new contract and is soon to be a free agent at the end of this month.

Osho isn’t the first centre-back to be linked with the Blades over the last couple of months. Sheffield United reportedly have former Nottingham Forest captain Joe Worrall on their radar along with a loan move for promising Tottenham Hotspur defender Ashley Phillips. Additionally, Paddy McNair is another name being mentioned after he has become a free agent following his departure from Middlesbrough.

Sheffield United in the market for centre-backs

Chris Wilder looks to have the left side depth of a back three complete through both Jack Robinson and Auston Trusty, and possibly even Rhys Norrington-Davies filling in depending on the opposition. But the same can’t be said for the right side.

Anel Ahmedhodzic is likely to be sold this summer with multiple reports linking him with a move to the Serie A. The Blades will of course have to replace the departing legend Chris Basham. Meanwhile, the club are waiting to see how John Egan recovers from his injury before offering him a new contract.

The Blades may be planning on signing three centre-backs this summer, with the hope that Egan recovers fine. And Osho, McNair, and Phillips would probably be most people’s pick of the bunch given there will be minimal fees involved, as opposed to Worrall where Forest could begin to demand a ridiculous fee because of their Financial Fair Play struggles.

Gabriel Osho’s stats

Not only will the appeal factor for the Blades be his low cost, he is a versatile player having performed at right-back and even in defensive midfield previously.

Last season, compared to other centre-backs from the big five European leagues including European competitions per FBref, Gabriel Osho ranked in the 85th percentile in non-penalty goals scored, highlighting his strengths in the opposition box.

Looking closer into his defensive statistics he averages two successful tackles per 90, which is enough to rank him in the 85th percentile. Osho ranks the best in middle third tackles – 96th percentile, while he ranks in the 93rd percentile for blocks. He also ranks 86th for interceptions.

Osho has shown an ability to take on his opponents, ranking in the 78th percentile. To add to this, he has a high shot-creating actions rate from take-ons for defenders – 89th percentile.

But one real issue for me is his weakness in the air, and after last seasons display the Blades should be looking to improve on their aerial frailties at the back, not adding to them. He has an aerial win rate of 50% per game, which ranks him in the 10th percentile.

Tags Gabriel Osho

1 Comment

  1. Why would Osho leave an established place at Luton to go to another Championship club? Makes no sense. Surely Luton could offer what they can?

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