Ahead of the Sky Blues’ return to the Championship, Coventry City have continued their pursuit of highly-rated Arsenal midfielder Ben Sheaf.
Who is Ben Sheaf?
Sheaf, 22, spent the 2019/20 season on loan at Doncaster Rovers, having previously enjoyed a brief stint with Stevenage Town in 2018.
Sheaf, a product of Arsenal’s youth academy, made his Gunners debut under Arsene Wenger in October 2017, featuring form the bench in a Europa League fixture against Red Star Belgrade. A former England youth-international, Sheaf impressed for Doncaster last season, making 18 league appearances for the club.
Yet to score in senior football, Sheaf is a versatile defensive midfielder, credited for his positional play in League One last season. If the former Doncaster loanee makes a switch to the Sky Blues, it is expected that he would feature at the base of City’s midfield box. Sheaf also has experience of playing in central defence, earning praise from Wenger who said that he was “always ahead of the game”.
Coventry are under pressure to add depth to their midfield following the departure of Zain Westbrooke. Westbrooke was allowed to leave the club after it emerged that Sky Blues manager Mark Robins would be unable to guarantee the 23-year-old regular appearances in the Championship.
Wolves duo provide another option
If City are unable to agree terms for Sheaf, the Sky Blues could turn their attentions to Wolves youngsters Renat Dadashov and Owen Otasowie. Born in New York, Otasowie has been deemed ready for first-team experience by Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo, although a loan move to the Championship could suit both parties.
The Sky Blues had previously cooled their interest in Dadashov, but could be forced to renew their approach if they are unable to attract Sheaf to St. Andrew's. City will face competition from Luton Town and Peterborough United if they seek to complete a loan switch from USMNT youngster Otasowie.
The Sky Blues have already ventured into the transfer market, adding Callum O’Hare, Marcel Hissner, Ryan Giles, Julien Dacosta and Gustavo Hamer to their squad. Jordan Shipley, a mainstay in Robins' squad last season, has also signed a contract extension, committing the midfielder to the Sky Blues until 2022.
City’s Championship preparations will intensify this week, with Coventry set to face Swindon Town in a pre-season friendly on 15 August.