Why Sheffield United should complete a move for Callum Gribbin
The Manchester Evening News claimed last month that the 20-year-old starlet was on trial at Bramall Lane following his release from the youth ranks at Old Trafford and it now seems that the Blades are about to tie him down to professional terms.
As per the report, though, Sheffield United are only prepared to offer the versatile attacker a short-term deal until the end of the current season, amidst claims that the Blades are in advanced talks to sign the youngster.
Gribbin, who was held in high regard by the youth coaches at Old Trafford, featured for United’s U-19 side in the UEFA Youth League earlier in his career, as well as for the U-18s and the U-23s in the U-18 Premier League and the Premier League 2 Division 2.
The 20-year-old tricky winger failed to make a successful transition to the senior level but he did make a strong enough impression in the youth ranks and was called up by former managers Jose Mourinho and Louis van Gaal to train with the first-team during the pre-season friendlies.
Despite being tipped for stardom by the youth coaching staff, Gribbin’s progress was blighted to a large extent by injuries and United opted against renewing his contract this summer.
However, as the story goes, the 20-year-old could get a second chance to build a career in the top-flight, with Sheffield United apparently keen to offer him an escape route.
Given that Gribbin never made a first-team appearance for Man United, it is still unclear as to what kind of role the Blades have in mind for him.
In all probability, the 20-year-old would initially link up with the development squad at Bramall Lane if they do end up signing him and then it will be upt o him to impress in training and make a breakthrough in Chris Wilder’s senior side.
Meanwhile, Sheffield United currently find themselves 15th in the Premier League standings with a victory and two draws after five games.
Wilder’s men are currently just a point above the relegation zone but the manager should be happy with how his team has acclimatised to the level of competition in the top-flight and there have been some definite signs of promise.
Gribbin might have failed to rub shoulders with the big boys at Old Trafford but one does get the feeling that he has the potential to eventually make a name for himself at the highest level.
Presumably, he has learnt a lot during his time in United’s youth system and Sheffield United could have a gem on their hands in the future if he manages to add more to his repertoire of skills.
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Former Man United youth prospect Ravel Morrison was handed a lifeline by the Blades this summer and it won’t be surprising if they go ahead with a deal for Callum Gribbin.
This is not a move that is likely to pay immediate dividends but his availability on a free transfer certainly makes him worth a punt for the club.