Former Sheffield United goalkeeper Paddy Kenny has pointed out Blades’ fans criticisms of new Rangers arrival John Lundstram towards the end of last season, in an interview with the Football Insider.
Lundstram, 27, rejected a fresh offer to stay at Bramall Lane last October after becoming a first-team regular in the Premier League for Sheffield United. He officially departed the club last week with his contract coming to an end.
The midfielder made 28 appearances in the top-flight last season under Chris Wilder and Paul Heckingbottom, with the Blades failing to replicate their form from the season before and finishing at the foot of the division.
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This torrid season saw the South Yorkshire side fail to win any of their first 17 league games – but even with promotion-winning manager Slavisa Jokanovic coming in to provide the club with a fresh start – Lundstram felt it was time to move on after first joining United back in 2017, and linked up with the Gers on Monday.
Although the midfielder played a part in their meteoric rise after joining the Blades when they were a recently promoted side from League One, his departure has upset many of the Championship side’s fans.
With this, former Sheffield United keeper Kenny has fired a warning to Rangers manager Steven Gerrard and Rangers fans, but also spoke about the quality he could potentially bring to Ibrox.
Speaking to the Football Insider, Kenny said: “He’s obviously a decent player. Steven Gerrard wouldn’t be signing players who aren’t good.
“But if you ask a lot of Sheffield United fans, they’ve been disappointed with how he’s been towards the back end of last season.
“A lot of people weren’t happy with his performances and felt like he’d downed tools a little bit. That’s not a good sign.
“But it depends whether he can pick it back up again now and do it for Rangers. When he is a bang at it, he is a very good player.”
Although it’s understandable to see why so many Blades fans are upset by the manner of his departure, new manager Jokanovic is adopting a ruthless approach with his squad this summer and wants to know their true intentions and mindset going into the next campaign.
The Serbian will have already conducted talks with the likes of Sander Berge and Jayden Bogle, with another wanted player in Aaron Ramsdale to tick off after the European Championship final, and he’s doing this because he wants to ensure every member of his squad for the 2021/22 season is fully committed to the cause.
He may have played down the club’s promotion expectations, but he knows that must be the aim with the resources and players they currently have. They cannot afford to be carrying anyone next year if they want to reach the summit of the second tier.
Because of this, Lundstram’s departure was one less problem for the manager to solve with his head seemingly being turned in October, although they would have wanted to make some money from his departure admittedly.