Sheffield United are in talks with free agent Leroy Lita, following his release by fellow promotion challengers Reading.

The former England Under-21 international could be an ideal replacement for current Blades striker Billy Sharp, who has recently been placed on the transfer list. However, Sheffield United boss Kevin Blackwell has expressed some frustration at how the negotiations have progressed. He told BBC Radio Sheffield: “I’ve been in contact with his agent. It’s a classic example of too many people talking for him.

“I’d like to think the kid could play his football and let the rest take care of itself, sadly it’s never like that.”

Lita scored 6 goals in his 9 appearances for the under-21’s and has already attracted plenty of interest, with Leicester City also said to be keeping an eye on the situation. Their manager Nigel Pearson spoke to BBC Radio Leicester but was not giving too much away.

“We will see what happens” said Pearson.

“I know there’s a lot of speculation about him [Lita] but I wouldn’t like to make any comment at the moment.”

Lita made his name at Bristol City, where he scored 36 goals in just 47 starts, earning him a £1million move to Reading in 2005. However despite getting off to a solid start, scoring 15 goals in his first season, he soon fell out of favour and was loaned out to Charlton in 2007-08 and Norwich last season.

During the latter of the loan deals, Lita enjoyed a resurgence in form, netting 7 times in 16 appearances and eyebrows were raised when he was released by the Royals earlier in the summer.

While he shouldn’t have a problem finding a club of similar stature, the decision is sure to have knocked Lita’s pride and so whoever does sign him could have quite a player on their hands. A wounded striker, like a wounded animal, can be a dangerous beast.