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Injury news means Sheffield United may have to experiment at wing-back against Arsenal

Sheffield United have more injury worries ahead of their Premier League match with Arsenal.

The division’s bottom side host the Gunners at Bramall Lane on Sunday with a host of players unavailable.

Jack O’Connell, Jack Robinson and Jack Rodwell are all out, while Chris Basham, Sander Berge and Billy Sharp are unlikely to feature.

John Egan made the bench against Leeds United last time out but remains a doubt. Meanwhile, there are question marks about both George Baldock and Jayden Bogle after they suffered injuries at Elland Road.

“We took two more injuries in the Leeds game with Jayden and George head injuries,” interim manager Paul Heckingbottom told Yorkshire Live.

“We have had to follow that protocol so hopefully they will be signed off and come through it. Today was the first day of contact and hopefully they will be fit and able to go.”

If both Baldock and Bogle are absent, then that will present Heckingbotom with a selection problem – who will play at right wing-back?

Unfamiliar role for one Sheffield United player against Arsenal

Photo by Alex Livesey – Danehouse/Getty Images

In every game in all competitions so far this season, either Baldock or Bogle has played on the right flank.

The form of the latter following a summer move from Derby County has been one of the few positives for the Blades in 2020/21.

We already know that, despite the departure of Chris Wilder as boss, the 3-5-2 formation is unlikely to be dropped any time soon.

So, who plays at right-back if both Baldock and Bogle are unavailable?

Well there are no natural options that immediately jump out. With Basham, Egan and O’Connell also currently injured, defensive personnel in general is limited.

In fact, Baldock had been filling in at centre-back in recent games as a result.

Presumably either Ethan Ampadu or Kean Bryan will replace him in the back three if Egan is still absent.

Both could also potentially be makeshift wing-backs. Bryan played in the position on the left when the Blades won 2-1 at Manchester United earlier this term.

Bogle has also featured on the left, meaning perhaps one of the left wing-back options could switch flanks.

Enda Stevens has been playing in central defence himself, so it’s unlikely to be him. But maybe Max Lowe or Ben Osborn could fill in. The latter would probably be a better option.

Whatever Heckingbottom decides, if Baldock and Bogle are both out then we will definitely see a new face in the position.

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