Sheffield United are thought to be keen on Matt Clarke as new boss Slavisa Jokanovic looks to reshape the squad ahead of the season opener against Birmingham City next month.
The 24-year-old is contracted to Brighton but he hasn’t played a game for the Seagulls since joining, with his minutes in the past two years coming on loan at Derby County.
And, with Graham Potter boasting a solid defence, it appears the Premier League side are ready to sanction a move, with Sun reporter Alan Nixon claiming the Blades are leading the race for the defender.
Here we outline THREE reasons why the Yorkshire outfit must do all they can to ensure Clarke ends up at Bramall Lane…
He’s proven at this level
Firstly, Jokanovic will be getting a player who is capable at this level.
Clarke has had two seasons with Derby and whilst the previous campaign was a tough one, the defender was once again one of the standout performers, and he was named Player of the Year in his first year.
So, he knows what the Championship requires and has shown he can do well.
He will bring balance to the defence
Crucially, Clarke is left-footed, which will bring a balance to Jokanovic’s defence.
With Kean Bryan seemingly set to leave and Jack O’Connell still sadly struggling with a serious injury, identifying a left-sided centre-back seems smart for the Blades.
Whether it’s a back four or a three, Clarke will be ready to play on the left side and that is very important for Jokanovic because he encourages his team to play out from deep.
He is a long-term answer
Finally, Sheffield United will be getting a player who can be a part of their defence for the long-term.
Despite his experience, with Clarke making over 150 appearances for Portsmouth earlier in his career, he is still only 24.
So, as well as being able to make an instant impact, he is a player who could star for the Blades for the years to come.