Sheffield United are set to offer teenage starlet Diego De Girolamo a new contract, manager Nigel Clough revealed yesterday.
York City have asked United to extend the Italian youth international’s loan spell at Bootham Crescent, and Clough is understood to be open to the possibility - if it doesn’t leave the Bramall Lane club short on strikers.
After Chris O’Grady’s recall by Brighton, Clough has only Michael Higdon and Marc McNulty as recognised, in-favour striking options, but the Blades boss intends to draft in reinforcements when the January transfer window opens.
“York have asked to keep Diego, so we’ll have a chat about it amongst ourselves this week and decide,” Clough said.
“But really, it all hinges on whether we get a striker in. If we do, then going back there to get games is the best thing for Diego at this stage of his development.
“We’re currently working on a new contract for him so hopefully that will go hand-in-hand. We can get that sorted and maybe he can extend his loan.
“He didn’t start the last game for York [a 3-0 win at Carlisle] but he’s been getting enough football there to suggest that that’s what’s best for him at the minute.
“But if we have to keep him here with us, then we’ll do that.”
The 19-year-old, who was born in Chesterfield but qualifies for Italy through his father, netted three goals in four games on loan at York earlier in the season. Since returning, he has scored one in four.
Meanwhile, Clough revealed that George Long could also go back out on loan in January after a disappointing spell at Oxford this season.
“George is in a similar position to Diego,” Clough said.
“A League Two club wants to take him on loan and that’s what’s best for him.”