Sheffield United complete signing of former Barnsley FC captain Conor Hourihane on loan

SHEFFIELD UNITED have made a much-needed transfer breakthrough with the news that Aston Villa midfielder and former Barnsley captain Conor Hourihane has completed his season-long loan move to Bramall Lane.

Former Barnsley captain Conor Hourihane, who has joined Sheffield United on loan from Aston Villa.

The Republic of Ireland international, 30, completed his medical at the club on Monday afternoon and provided another badly-needed option in the centre of midfield.

Hourihane impressed on loan at Swansea City last term and enjoyed an outstanding spell earlier in his career across South Yorkshire at Barnsley.

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On joining the Blades, he said: "I'm delighted to be here and cannot wait to get started. I've played against Sheffield United a few times and it is an exciting club to be involved in.

"The manager (Slavisa Jokanovic) here has a great reputation in the Championship, his Fulham team beat us in a play-off final a couple of years ago and I'm looking forward to working with him."

The Blades are also in the market for several other players, with head coach Jokanovic having repeatedly pressed home the need for some new signings ahead of Tuesday's transfer deadline.

Referencing the need for new signings, Jokanovic, speaking after his side's underwhelming draw at Luton, said: "We must sign people.

"We must stick with the strategy, the plan and what was promised to be before I arrived at this club.

"If we were so good, there would not be a problem. We talked about four players and then that became five with one person leaving.

"This was not my plan. This was the board’s plan and I accepted it."

The club have also reportedly opened talks with former Manchester City and Chelsea keeper Willy Caballero, 39, who is a free agent.