Sheffield United have been touting Norwegian international midfielder Sander Berge for a move away from Bramall Lane since the second half of the 2020-21 season, according to the Sheffield Star.
The 23-year-old was a £22 million signing by the Blades back in January 2020, which was then a club record for the Yorkshire side before it was broken when Rhian Brewster arrived months later.
Berge played just 29 league games though in the last season-and-a-half for United after he missed a large chunk of last season following hamstring surgery, and the end results for the Blades saw them relegated to the Championship.
Due to his obvious talents, Berge is not expected to be playing in the second tier of English football next season and there are a number of teams who are reportedly interested, including Arsenal and Napoli.
United are prepared to stick to their £35 million valuation of Berge for now but his transfer suitors believe that a compromise in price will need to be made later on in the transfer window.
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But the shopping around of Berge has been going on for longer than the last few weeks, with the club’s board of directors reportedly spending much of the second half of the previous campaign looking at potential new clubs for the player, despite relegation not being confirmed.
The saga though is expected to last a while yet due to the fact that no buyers are willing to meet Sheffield United’s asking price – but it would still be a huge surprise should Berge still be at the club come September.
Berge’s departure from Bramall Lane is expected even from the standpoint of Sheffield United fans, but it’s quite surprising that the club have been looking at his departure for a number of months.
Unless there was a guarantee made to Berge that he could definitely depart should relegation occur, then surely the club would be looking to keep one of their star players, just like the likes of Norwich did when they kept Emi Buendia around.
But it doesn’t look like this will be the case at United – many of their current squad won’t be targets for Premier League clubs but Berge is and they can try and make a quick buck from his sale – and if he doesn’t want to be in the Championship either then it makes sense to cash in.