It was a frustrating night at Bramall Lane for Sheffield United last night as the Blades made it back to back 0-0 draws as Hull City toiled and battled in the wind.
Paul Heckingbottom’s side had a number of big chances to win the game, along with a few half-chances. Iliman Ndiaye missed the best chance of the game, while Jack Robinson also should have scored with a header early on. Rhys Norrington-Davies blazed wide late on, while Oli McBurnie spurned a few good openings after being given another start.
Naturally, McBurnie was the focus of a lot of discussion. The £20m striker hasn’t ever quite got going at United and is very much a marmite type player among fans. He is, though, proven at this level and there is a hope that he can play a big part in the run-in.
And while some supporters think McBurnie needs to do more in red and white, former captain, Chris Morgan, has backed the big striker to come good once that match sharpness returns fully.
“I think so (McBurnie trying to find his match sharpness). He’s been out a while, I think it’s that match sharpness. Certainly in and around the penalty area,” Morgan told SUTV Live.
“Strikers who are playing week in week out they don’t need to look where the goal is, it’s just instinct. Whereas at the moment I think the chances Oli is getting at the moment, he’s thinking about them, rather than acting instinctively.”
Our View: McBurnie Showing Glimpses But Goals Are Needed
We can see both sides of the coin when it comes to Oli McBurnie. On one hand, he is a striker the club paid £20m for and eight goals in 85 appearances isn’t exactly earth shattering.
However, in his defence, he was part of a woeful side last season that went down and this year he’s had injury problems and fitness issues due to illness. He clearly loves being at the club, but the goals simply must start flowing if fans are to really back the big striker.
Last night, he actually played well in the main. He held the ball well enough and got into good positions, albeit he was a tired looking figure come the end. He was unlucky with a few headers and perhaps should have done better when he seized on a mistake from the Hull defence.
Ultimately, Morgan is right when it comes to McBurnie. Only matches will see his sharpness return fully and with that, we just have to hope the goals come. If they do, then it offers United a huge boost in their playoff pursuit.