Premier League vultures circle for Oliver Arblaster after Sheffield United relegation

Oliver Arblaster – Premier League vultures circle for Oliver Arblaster after Sheffield United relegation

Aston Villa and West Ham United are among a number of Premier League clubs circling Sheffield United’s highly rated young midfielder Oliver Arblaster.

Sheffield United were relegated from the Premier League at the weekend and could now face a battle to keep the coveted England Under-20 international this summer.

Scouts from across England’s top flight have been keeping close tabs on the progress of Arblaster, who was even made captain in Sheffield United’s 4-2 defeat at Manchester United last week despite it being only his seventh Premier League start for the club. He also captained the club against Newcastle at the weekend.

Arblaster, 20, impressed on loan at League One Port Vale during the first half of the season before signing a new four-year deal with Sheffield United in February that ties him to the club until June 2028.

Manager Chris Wilder handed Arblaster his Premier League debut as a 64th minute substitute against Arsenal in early March when Sheffield United were already 6-0 down and the teenager has been an ever-present since. Despite Sheffield United’s severe struggles, the holding midfielder has stood out for his quality on the ball, composure and work rate and is already catching the eye of a series of leading Premier League clubs.

Sheffield United are determined to keep him at Bramall Lane next season and Wilder has earmarked a key role for him in the Championship.

Wilder claimed Arblaster was “the best midfielder on the pitch for his age” at Old Trafford last Wednesday and has similarly been impressed by the maturity the youngster showed in a 3-1 defeat to Liverpool at Anfield and a 2-2 draw against Chelsea.

“His performances have been incredibly consistent at the highest level – against Liverpool the way they press,” Wilder said.

“He was the best on the park against £200m of talent against Chelsea. He was good at Brentford and that was a different challenge.

“He was against Burnley and [against United], pound for pound against [Christian] Eriksen and Man United have got a special kid in there as well [in Kobbie Mainoo], he was going to the end and making really good decisions with and without the ball.”

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