Michael Verrips played a key role in helping Belgian side KV Mechelen achieve promotion to the top flight.

The goalkeeper made 25 appearances in the league last season and kept 12 clean sheets in the process. He has now emerged as a target for Sheffield United.

Het Nieuwsblad claims the Blades ‘would like’ to sign the Dutchman, who decided not to show up for Mechelen’s training earlier this week.

In addition to this, the 22-year-old also cleared his locker as he wants to leave the Jupiler Pro League side this summer. The keeper’s decision to force a move away from Mechelen has seen him face heavy criticism.

Embed from Getty Images

Verrips’ club teammate and good friend, Gustav Engvall, gave his thoughts after the former decided to go AWOL.

“Whether I am surprised by his move? Somewhat, but if you know this world a little, it is very normal,” Engvall said.

“I have already gone through several clubs. Players come and go. That’s how it works in football. One day you sit back and relax in the seat for tomorrow’s training. The next day you are in the transfer spotlight.”

Engvall is also unhappy with the criticism directed towards Verrips and has urged the goalkeeper to not give any notice to the opinions made against him.

“This is not Mickey’s way of doing things. This has been sent in by people around him. Mickey should focus on family and friends and not listen to the opinions of others. He doesn’t deserve to get all that sh** over him now,” Engvall stressed.

Despite reports of Sheffield’s interest in Verrips, his teammate decided not to respond to these claims.