As United close in on more permanent signings, director of football David Holdsworth confirmed this week that the loan market is an area the club will utilise, particularly as we get closer to the season kick off in August.
“One of the reasons Steven [Pressley] was retained is because he was clear on the identity he wanted for his team,” he said. “When he had that discussion with the board he was very clear on the process he wanted and that he was prepared to work within our policies.
“Those policies are strict and strong, as they must be, because this club, along with other clubs over the years, has invariably put themselves at risk of going into administration and going out of business. That won’t happen here anymore.
“We must be careful with the business we do, but we also have to show ambition. I can assure you that our ambition is as strong as anyone else, but we’ll achieve our success in a manner which is respectful of how we go about our jobs.
“It’s about having accountability in the dressing room, the manager’s office, and in every office and department of the club. We want this to be a professionally run club, and we’ve made changes in the way we do things to achieve that.”
“There’s no doubt about it, we will use the loan system,” he confirmed. “Looking back at how we used that market last year, we were in a situation where we couldn’t afford to keep one of those loan signings for the rest of the season.
“In the end we got into a good place and we got support to try to get that person back, and it ended up that we couldn’t finalise that simply because his parent club hadn’t done enough business.”
“This season we’re hopeful that we can recognise that there are some very young players out there,” he continued. “We have one young loan player secured already, which I can’t name because his parent club wouldn’t want me to at this moment in time. He will come through the door from what is now a Premier League club.
“There are one or two who we are going to be given first choice on, which is great. We’d like them to be season long loans, so they aren’t jumping ship or going back, which is sometimes the hard part of having a half-season deal. Whatever we do we have to understand that the loan system can be used to your benefit, particularly financially.”
And he also confirmed that initial approaches have been made to Sheffield United and Aston Villa as the Blues look to secure the services of attacking midfielders Nathan Thomas and Callum O’Hare for a second spell with the club.
“We’re in there with a shout,” he told us. “Nathan wants to come back but it all depends what Sheffield United want to do with him. He fitted well here and he’s a player we like.
“We’re also still in for Callum, but we wish him well if he decides he wants to go higher. If he does come to League Two we certainly feel we’re in a place where he enjoyed his football, and he’s one I would drive down to pick up myself if he does want to come back.
“We’ve made an approach for both of them so, again, we have to wait to see what happens with them.”