With his six-month loan spell at Sheffield United on the verge of expiring, Liverpool today announced midfielder Conor Coady will extend his stay in League One until the end of the season. Given he first joined the Blades in the summer and has since scored four goals in 32 appearances, an extension always seemed on the cards.
Sheffield manager Nigel Clough had previously signalled that if Liverpool were willing to extend his deal, they would like to hold on to Coady, who could turn out to be key to Sheffield's hopes of remaining in League One. His side are currently three points clear of safety in the tightly contested bottom half of the league.
"Conor Coady’s loan is up in three weeks’ time, so we’ve got a decision to make on that," was Clough's response earlier in the month when asked about the chance of extending the midfielder's deal until the end of the current term. "It depends on Liverpool. They’ll make the decision on that one."
The 21-year-old Coady has become an integral part of Sheffield's midfield, and over the longer term, whether he ends up back with Liverpool or not after a few seasons that have seemed to see his development at Anfield plateau, his experience in a relegation dogfight can only help his chances.
"Coming here, being around the place, has improved me as a footballer and as a person too," said Coady. "You can get quite insulated when you are playing reserve team football because, although you always want to win, there is never as much riding on it as a proper game."