SHEFFIELD United boss Chris Wilder believes Eddie Howe "might not have wanted" to sell Lys Mousset to the Blades in the summer.

The striker left Cherries for a fee of around £10million in July, three years after joining the club from Le Havre.

Mousset, 23, found goals hard to come by under Howe, netting just five times in 71 appearances in all competitions, albeit only 19 of those were starts.

But the Frenchman is quickly becoming a fans' favourite at Sheffield United, notching three Premier League goals already, the same tally he managed in his entire stay on the south coast.

Mousset notched the winner for the Blades against Arsenal last week before coming off the bench to score the equaliser in the following game as Wilder's charges grabbed a point from Saturday's trip to West Ham.

Wilder said: "Eddie Howe and Jason Tindall at Bournemouth told me how good Lys is – he just didn’t get an opportunity because of their other strikers.

"Sometimes there comes a time for a player when he’s been at a club and can’t see things changing that he has to move on.

"He was kept out of the team by Callum Wilson and Josh King, two of the best strikers in the division, so his opportunities there were very limited. It’s opened up for him a little bit but he didn’t have a great pre-season. If he was up to speed, he would have started.

“He needs more work on the training ground and in the gym. He has attributes none of our players have got. Some can run around the pitch all day, but are they as powerful and explosive as Mousset?”

He added: "We knew about him and, deep down, Eddie might not have wanted to move him on. But sometimes, if players don’t really see anything changing, it’s difficult not to let them go.

"Jason and Eddie were really complimentary about Lys when we went in for him.

“He didn’t leave on hard terms, far from it. There’s a really good relationship there.”