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Football News: Team Review - Sheffield United

Team Review - Sheffield United
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Team Review - Sheffield United

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League Position: 20th

 

Goalkeepers:

Aaron Ramsdale
Michael Verrips
Wes Foderingham
Simon Moore (released)

Not too bad a set of keepers, Ramsdale looked so much better, once he settled back in, with the Blades than he had at Bournemouth. He is a keeper who does not look comfortable when off his line, so the style of play suited him, once he had adapted. It was in front of him that the real problems lay last season! It should certainly be a good enough set of keepers to challenge for automatic promotion back to the Prem.

 


Defenders:

John Egan
Jack O'Connell
Chris Basham
Kean Bryan
Phil Jagielka (released)
Enda Stevens
Max Lowe
Jack Robinson
Jayden Bogle
George Baldock

A solid set of defenders when all are fit and on form, but injuries badly affected them and they could never get their first choice defence on the field last season. Sadly their lack of quality back ups was severely exposed at times and hard work was not enough to make up for it. Under the right manager, it is good enough for a swift return to the Premier League.

 

Midfielders:

Sander Berge
Jack Rodwell (released)
John Lundstram (released)
John Fleck
Oliver Norwood
Ben Osborn
Luke Freeman

Again a lack of quality held them back, especially with the lack of rest time between games making it difficult for them to maintain the high tempo, high workrate style that had been successful. They struggled to get anywhere near the level they were at last season and that led to the better teams being able to overrun them. Without rotation options to freshen things up, they were just left to flounder. It will need reinforcement if they are to challenge at the top of the Championship. There is a very real lack of wide options within the squad if they decide to switch to a back four, that will need to be addressed, even if just to give them the option of more attacking wing-backs at times.

 


Forwards:

Rhian Brewster
Oliver McBurnie
Lys Mousset
Oliver Burke
David McGoldrick
Daniel Jebbison
Billy Sharp

You have to wonder just how bad the forwards were in training that Oliver McBurnie was seen as the main option, despite being woeful at Premier League level (and that is me being kind). They worked hard but were completely inadequate in the top flight to get the goals needed. Unless McBurnie rediscovers the form he showed for Swansea City and Brewster recovers to the kind of promise he showed pre-long term injury, then they are in trouble. While Sharp is excellent at Championship level, he is ageing and non of Burke, McGoldrick or Mousset have ever shown any sign of being prolific goalscorers.

 


Manager: Chris Wilder then Paul Heckingbottom now Slavisa Jokanovic

After Chris Wilder was sacked following a falling out with the owner over the money wasted on strikers like McBurnie, the choice to replace him was, inexplicably, Heckingbottom as caretaker. All I can think is that he must talk a good game or have some compromising photographs of the owner, as he had shown nothing to suggest that he is a good choice. Jokanovic did manage to get Fulham promoted at the second attempt playing decent football, and also Watford up too, so maybe he can repeat his success with the Blades.

 


Conclusion:

They look a mess under the new owner. It just feels like Prince Abdullah was looking to remove anything connected with Kevin McCabe, once he established full control over the club. Now it needs to all settle down and just concentrate on building a better squad, though I do feel he will come to regret sacking Wilder. Sometimes a man just suits the make up of a club, Wilder seemed to be that man at Sheff Utd.

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Written by Tris Burke June 30 2021 18:11:43