Why Billel Omrani would be a smart signing for Sheffield United

Back in January, a report from The Sun, claimed that Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder had been plotting a raid on CFR Cluj for striker Billel Omrani. However, negotiations between the clubs failed to reach a positive conclusion and the Frenchman ended up staying put in the Romanian top-flight. 

Profile

A youth exponent of Marseille, Billel Omrani made his professional debut during the 2011-12 season but failed to make much of an impact at his boyhood club. He made only 6 appearances in Ligue 1 and spent time on loan at Arles-Avignon in the second-tier before moving to Romania with heavyweights CFR Cluj in 2016. 

Omrani has established himself as a quality goalscorer in Romania over the past four years, guiding his club to two domestic titles. The 27-year-old has managed an impressive tally of 37 goals and 29 assists in 156 appearances for Cluj in all competitions.

fbl eur c3 rennes cluj
Cluj’s French striker Billel Omrani (R) vies with Rennes’ French midfielder Eduardo Camavinga during the Europa League Group E football match between Rennes and CFR Cluj at the Roazhon Park stadium in Rennes, on October 24, 2019. (Photo by DAMIEN MEYER/AFP via Getty Images)

Omrani would add more firepower to the Blades’ attack

Sheffield United earned plaudits for their impressive 9th-place finish in their first season back in the Premier League last term. But things have gone horribly wrong for the Blades in 2020-21. Chris Wilder’s side currently find themselves languishing rock-bottom of the standings following a nightmarish start to the campaign that has seen them suffer 12 defeats from 13 games so far, accumulating just a solitary point in the process. 

Lack of goals has been one of the major contributing factors behind the Yorkshire outfit’s significant fall from grace in the top-flight. Sheffield United have managed only 7 goals so far, which is currently the worst scoring record in the division. With fixtures set to come thick and fast in the second half of the season, the Blades desperately need to start putting some points on board or risk getting relegated to the Championship. 

It’s a no-brainer that United need to seek some additional firepower in the winter market and reigniting interest in Billel Omrani might be a smart idea. The Frenchman doesn’t have a lot of experience in the elite leagues across the continent but the Blades are likely to find it difficult to attract top-quality players in January given their position at the bottom of the PL table. 

ss lazio v cfr cluj group e uefa europa league
ROME, ITALY – NOVEMBER 28: Billel Omrani of CFR Cluj competes for the ball with Denis Vavro of SS Lazio during the UEFA Europa League group E match between SS Lazio and CFR Cluj at Stadio Olimpico on November 28, 2019 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images)

Omrani has proven himself to be a reliable source of goals and assists in Romania while his versatility to play in multiple positions across the forward line would hand a boost to the Blades’ squad dynamics. The 27-year-old has played as a centre-forward 64 times in his career while featuring out wide on the left on 35 occasions.

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Verdict

Sheffield United need to reshape their attack in January, with Oliver McBurnie, Billy Sharp, Lys Mousset, David McGoldrick and Oliver Burke only sharing 6 goals among them so far in the Premier League.

Billel Omrani might not be a household name in Europe but the Frenchman is nearing the last six months of his current contract at Cluj. That should present an excellent market opportunity for the Blades to line him up on a cut-price deal next month.

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