This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more
Stoke City are eyeing up a move for Sheffield United’s Luke Freeman, according to the Sunday Mirror’s Darren Witcoop.
Freeman joined the Blades in 2019 when they were promoted to the Premier League, moving from Queens Park Rangers in a £5 million deal.
The midfielder though struggled to force his way into Chris Wilder’s plans, playing just 11 times in the top flight and last season he found himself back in the Championship on loan at Nottingham Forest.
Freeman also failed to set the world alight there, playing 21 times and scoring once but he did miss months of the campaign due to injury.
With United now having a new manager in Slavisa Jokanovic, Freeman may be given a clean slate but it hasn’t stopped the Potters, along with AFC Bournemouth, being reportedly interested.
Would the 29-year-old be a good signing for Stoke though? We asked the FLW team for their thoughts on the matter.
I feel that Freeman needs a fresh start and Stoke could be a good move for him.
He was tremendous for QPR in the Championship in 2018/19, but for whatever reason it just didn’t work out for him at Bramall Lane in 2019/20.
He was desperately unlucky with injury at Nottingham Forest last season and had the wrong surgery before the season had begun, so it was always going to be a mountain to climb from day one.
If he can get a full pre-season under his belt and get back to full fitness, then there is no reason why Freeman can’t be a success, as the talent is quite clearly there.
Stoke are in need of more goal threat from midfield, especially with Nick Powell’s future always a talking point, and he could be a good signing.
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Additional strength in depth is certainly needed.
Freeman hasn’t hit the heights that were expected of him whilst with Sheffield United, and it would make sense for him to depart this summer.
The midfielder has shown that he can perform to a high standard in the Championship whilst with QPR earlier in his career.
But he’ll be looking to get his career back on track at the earliest of opportunities, and a move to Stoke City could be the ideal move for all parties involved.
The Potters could be set to lose Sam Clucas this summer, and therefore it seems likely that an alternative will be needed in the near future.
This could be a shrewd move by Stoke if they can get Freeman back to his best.
There are some real obvious positives to this deal but it all depends on what sort of Freeman Stoke get.
If the one that was at QPR rocks up he has all the ability to really fire Stoke up the table and Potters fans will love him.
However, we’ve not really seen that player for a little while and, therefore, you can see why the jury might be a little out on him.
He’s absolutely worth a punt with the quality he does have, though, and if the Potters feel that they can get the best out of him, then who am I to doubt them.
He’s a fine player in full flow, and I hope wherever he ends up he gets into some rhythm.