Alex Baptiste set for Sheffield United debut after signing on loan from Middlesbrough

Alex Baptiste, left, up against Blades team-mate Conor Sammon
Alex Baptiste, left, up against Blades team-mate Conor Sammon

Alex Baptiste is set to feature in the Sheffield United squad which takes on Burton Albion tonight after signing on an emergency loan from Middlesbrough.

The 30-year-old former Bolton Wanderers defender was unveiled by Aitor Karanka last summer but is now set to spend the remainder of the campaign at Bramall Lane - although the Championship club can recall him after 28 days.

"We are delighted to be able to bring Alex in," Nigel Adkins, the United manager, said. "He's a vastly experienced performer who can operate in a number of positions. Following an injury, he is now fit and raring to go and will make a valuable contribution in the remaining months of the season."

Baptiste, who also represented this evening's opponents earlier in his career, has yet to feature for Middlesbrough after suffering a serious leg injury during a friendly at York City. But, having proven his fitness behind the scenes at Rockliffe Park, Karanka gave him the all-clear to join United earlier today.

Baptiste has been expected to feature for Middlesbrough during an under-21 fixture against Manchester United last night but was withdrawn from the squad after talks between Adkins and his counterpart on Teesside.

Baptiste, who helped Blackpool gain promotion to the Premier League before joining Wanderers, started his career with Mansfield Town and impressed on loan for Blackburn Rovers last term.