Matt Done and John Brayford could both play for Sheffield United next season if they fail to secure moves away from Bramall Lane.
Although the prospect of either being granted a recall appear to be slim, assistant manager Alan Knill has refused to completely rule-out the possibility as preparations for the new Championship season gather pace.
United, who complete their summer warm-up programme at Eastleigh tonight, made Brayford and Done available for transfer after lifting the League One title last term.
“Until something changes, they are still our players,” Knill said. “They’re not kicking their heels. They have trained with us and are around to use if needed.”
Brayford has not featured for United since August after spending most of last season on loan at Burton Albion. The Staffordshire club, managed by Chris Wilder’s predecessor Nigel Clough, would like to sign the defender on a permanent basis but will struggle to match his salary at United. The situation has been complicated by the fact Wilder’s employers grew tired of being forced to agree costly financial settlements, often totalling nearly £400,000, with unwanted players before the 49-year-old’s appointment.
Done made 35 appearances for United during their promotion winning campaign and has attracted interest from Rotherham and Rochdale.
“Everyone is working hard, including Matt and John,” Knill continued. “Exactly what we would expect them to do.”
Clough, who signed Brayford during his spell in charge of United, recently confirmed Albion are monitoring the full-back’s situation but acknowledged talks aimed at securing his release at made little progress.
“We made an enquiry for John Brayford that didn’t go anywhere, so we’re probably going to get a right-back in,” Clough said. “
Meanwhile, for United captain Jay McEveley has joined Tranmere Rovers.
McEveley, aged 32, left Ross County by mutual consent earlier this summer, midway through his two year contract with the Scottish Premiership club.