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Morgan Gibbs-White deserves big credit as Lage confirms he opted against Wolves return

Morgan Gibbs-White had the opportunity to return to Wolves in January, but opted to stay on loan at Sheffield United.

Bruno Lage confirmed yesterday that the 22-year-old had an offer to return to Molineux for the rest of the 2021/22 season.

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Gibbs-White did actually return to the club during the winter transfer window in order to receive treatment for an injury. It must have been then that Lage made the offer to have him back.

But Gibbs-White declined, choosing to see out his loan spell at Bramall lane in its entirety.

Lage said (via Sheffield Star): “I didn’t put pressure on him, but I said: ‘If you want to stay now in January with us, you can and I’ll be happy to work with you.

“I had the feeling maybe Adama Traore would go. So I said: ‘If you think it’s more important for you to return to Sheffield United and continue the work you’re doing there, I’ll be happy in the same way.

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“‘Or if you want to stay, accept the challenge to fight with (Francisco) Trincao, with Pedro (Neto), with Daniel (Podence) and with Hwang (Hee-chan)’.

Gibbs-White has really been flourishing with the Championship outfit.

He now has nine goals and seven assists this season. That is a brilliant return for a player who hadn’t started that many games in senior football before this season.

Since the closure of the winter transfer window, Gibbs-White has contributed three goals and three assists. Such statistics appear to give justification to his decision to stay out on loan.

Morgan Gibbs-White deserves credit for sticking with Sheffield United

Lage clearly likes Gibbs-White. He didn’t want him to depart in the first place, and now we are hearing that there was indeed an offer for the player to return to Wolves. Blades boss Paul Heckingbottom had said a few weeks ago that Gibbs-White was ‘adamant’ to see out his loan in full.

Gibbs-White deserves great credit for his decision.

It would perhaps be easy for a young player to dance to the tune of his manager back at his parent club.

But Gibbs-White clearly feels his current environment is better for his development right now. He seems to know what he needs.

And he is right to be staying put.

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Lage spoke about him returning to compete with the likes of Francisco Trincao, Pedro Neto, Hwang Hee-chan and Daniel Podence.

Perhaps Lage sees Gibbs-White as a wide player. And maybe this was part of the reason Gibbs-White didn’t feel compelled to return.

While he can operate out wide, he certainly looks to be more effective playing as a central attacking midfielder.