June 15, 2020 / 12:28 PM / a month ago

Sheffield United confident keeper Henderson will stay for rest of season

FILE PHOTO- Premier League - Sheffield United v AFC Bournemouth - Bramall Lane, Sheffield, Britain - February 9, 2020 Sheffield United's Dean Henderson celebrates after teammate John Lundstram scores their second goal Action Images via Reuters/Carl Recine

LONDON (Reuters) - Sheffield United’s hopes of securing a place in European competition for next season received a boost on Monday as they confirmed they are close to agreeing an extension of goalkeeper Dean Henderson’s loan deal from Manchester United.

Henderson has been a major reason for the Blades’ impressive first season back in the top flight and only one keeper has kept more Premier League clean sheets than the 23-year-old.

With the novel coronavirus pandemic pushing the season beyond June 30, the date Henderson’s loan deal was set to expire, there were worries he might return to Old Trafford.

“I spoke to (Manchester United manager) Ole (Gunnar Solskjaer) yesterday morning and thanked him for his co-operation with Dean,” Wilder told a virtual news conference.

“It is in the process in the next couple of days for Dean to stay with us for the rest of the season.”

Sheffield United are seventh in the table on 43 points from 28 games, two points behind Solskjaer’s fifth-placed side, and restart the season at second-bottom Aston Villa on Wednesday.

Henderson, tipped as a future England keeper, is in his second season on loan with the Blades and was a key part of their promotion-winning side.

Wilder hopes he could still be at the club next season.

“We have had early conversations and of course we would be open to Dean coming back,” he said. “He is Manchester United’s player and they will make that decision. If there’s an opportunity we would look to take that up.”

Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Ken Ferris

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