Michael Verrips is of the belief the legal battle surrounding his move to Sheffield United is the reason for him not getting opportunities at the English club.
The goalkeeper arrived at Bramall Lane on a free transfer in the summer of 2019. His former club, KV Mechelen, slammed the 24-year-old and the Blades for not following transfer protocol, and threatened to take legal action against both parties.
Mechelen claim Verrips unilaterally broke the agreement he had with them until 2021 and therefore, wanted an “acceptable” solution over the controversial transfer.
The Belgian side took the matter to FIFA and according to Het Laatste Nieuws, the two clubs reached an agreement for a ‘small transfer fee’, eights months after he joined the Premier League side.
Verrips was told he’d be Sheffield United’s second choice keeper last season, but he was restricted to only 41 minutes of action in the FA Cup.
The situation didn’t improve this season even after Sheffield United saw Dean Henderson return to his parent club, Manchester United. This forced him to join FC Emmen on a loan deal in the winter market.
“I had agreed with Sheffield United that I would start as second choice goalkeeper, but that I would play all games in the FA Cup and in the EFL Cup,” Verips told Voetbal International, as relayed by HLN.
“I would also play both league games against Manchester United, because our first choice goalkeeper [of last season], Dean Henderson, was loaned from them and was not allowed to play.”
“Because of all the legal battle, Sheffield United decided to get another second keeper. I was not integrated in the first selection… I was completely down in the pits.”
Verips’ loan deal with Emmen is until the end of the season and he will have to return to the parent club in the summer. His contract with Sheffield United runs down in 2024.