Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom is interested in pursuing a deal for Heart of Midlothian centre back John Souttar.
The Scotland international is also a target of Rangers and presents value in the market with his contract up at Hearts at the end of the season.
John Souttar’s brother, Harry, has made a great impact in the Championship for Stoke City in the last couple of seasons and if John Souttar could have half that, then he would be a smart signing.
Paul Heckingbottom explained why he is interested in bolstering his defensive ranks with the 25-year-old when he spoke to the Daily Record.
He said: “He’s one of a few that we have been looking at. We highlighted positions we need players in and he’s one in that position.
“We would be foolish not to have a look at him, he’s a free transfer in the summer. I am not going to say if we are going to do it but certainly someone we have looked at. I know him from my time in Scotland a good player and I am sure we will be linked with more players, some will be right and some will be way off the mark.”
Ben Davies has slotted into the Blades’ backline very nicely on loan from Liverpool this term, but below him, John Egan and Chris Basham there is very limited depth in the squad.
Quiz: Can you name which club Sheffield United signed these 28 midfielders from?
John Souttar could have his choice of clubs this month and given the intentions of the Sheffield United board, the chances are that he will have more glamorous offers. It will be interesting to see if Heckingbottom’s knowledge of Scottish talent comes into play in the transfer market but this does not seem like a goer this month.
It does appear that Souttar’s contract situation is making him a much more wanted man than his performances on the pitch. That can be a little misleading and suggests that it could be smart to stay away at this juncture, see how he adjusts to a new club and then re-engage interest further down the line.
Heckingbottom maintains a 100% record as Blades manager this season and some shrewd January business would significantly enhance their hopes of a top six finish.