‘Never know’ - coach speaks out on Everton-linked striker as contract offered

Everton have been linked with with Sheffield United striker Iliman Ndiaye.

Sheffield United are hopeful that they can keep hold of Iliman Ndiaye in the summer transfer window.

The striker hit 15 goals for the Blades last season to help them to Premier League promotion. However, Ndiaye has been linked with an exit from Bramall Lane, with Everton one club linked as they search for additional forward options. French side Marseille are also said to be keen.

United have offered Ndiaye a new, improved contract in a bid to keep him at the club. And Stuart McCall, assistant manager to Paul Heckingbottom, spoke about the Senegal international’s future after a 1-0 pre-season loss to Rotherham United on Tuesday night. And the Blades are adamant that Ndiaye’s head has not been turned.

Speaking to the Sheffield Star, McCall said: “He’s disappointed he hasn’t scored tonight. Listen, he’s 100% committed here. Every day he comes in with a smile on his face and if you saw training yesterday, he was laughing and joking about the place.

“liman’s the type of kid that just loves football, whether it’s here or training or wherever. He’ll just get his head down until anything different happens. He’s our player, and we’ve got no worries about his mentality to approach the game. No worries at all. Hopefully, he’ll still be a Blade come the end of the window.

“He’s a Sheffield United player. You saw his performance tonight, he was still lively and wanting to get in positions. He could have maybe had a couple of goals and he’s disappointed not to have scored, and that’s how we want him to be.

“He loves football, he’s infectious and he’s getting his head down and working as hard as he can for the team. It’d be great for everyone if he’s here after the deadline and who’s to say he won’t? You never know in football what’s around the corner. But one thing we’ll get from Iliman is total commitment and it’ll be brilliant if he’s still here when the window closes.

“He comes in, gets on with his football and you saw tonight, he was still getting in areas and looking dangerous. If he’d hit the bottom corner we’d have seen his smiling face and celebration. He’s a little bit disappointed not to have scored, but Iliman is Iliman. He loves football and he’s an infectious character. And that’s how he’s been from the first minute of pre-season.”