Chris Wilder is adamant that Ollie Norwood and John Lundstram will play their normal games this weekend at Brighton.
The Blades travel to the AMEX looking to continue their unbeaten away run. But with John Fleck missing through suspension and a number of other players close to a one-match ban, some fans have called for Wilder to consider changing things up a bit.
However, the United gaffer had a stern message for his players, insisting that Norwood and Lundstram are under no instructions to be careful.
“If there is a tackle there to be made, they will make it”, Wilder said (Danny Hall, Sheffield Star).
Both Norwood and Lundstram are one yellow away from a suspension. However, if they can get through this weekend and the Boxing Day fixture with Watford unscathed, the threat of suspension lifts.
Premier League rules state that any player with five cautions up to and including match 19, will result in a one-game ban. This is the rule John Fleck fell foul of during the win over Aston Villa.
Who is waiting in the wings if Lundstram and Norwood are booked?
We’ve already looked at who might come in for John Fleck this weekend. But if both ‘Lunny’ and Norwood are cautioned, then other players will need to be ready.
The obvious replacement for Norwood is Mo Besic. The Bosnian came on at Norwich a few weeks back to good effect.
For Lundstram, the options are wider. Luke Freeman and Ben Osborn are the players who immediately spring to mind. However, Ravel Morrison is also waiting in the wings after seeing only 14 minutes of Premier League action all season.
Chris Wilder has spoken all season about his entire squad being ready to go when needed. If Norwood and Lundstram do indeed get booked, the Blades boss will have no qualms in putting someone else in.