Sheffield United have been without Jack O’Connell for well in excess of a year now and the Blades fans are desperate to see the defender return from injury eventually.
O’Connell has suffered a number of setbacks on his road to recovery. It is hope the former Brentford man can eventually return. However, things have gone quiet and manager Slavisa Jokanovic said at the start of his rein he would not be thinking about using him this season.
Few would have predicted just how big a loss O’Connell would be. The defender has been sorely missed, with a number of replacements all failing to live up to his high levels and standards.
And ahead of Blackburn, the Blades boss was asked to give the latest update on Jack O’Connell. Sadly, it’s nothing new for United fans.
“I don’t have any update – nothing new last time someone ask me I said I expect him next year,” Jokanovic told Yorkshire Live in his pre-match presser today.
Since O’Connell went down injured, United have looked to use other players in the back three and have since changed shape under Jokanovic.
The likes of Jack Robinson, Ethan Ampadu, and Enda Stevens have all tried to fill in for the Blades powerhouse.
Our View: Jack O’Connell made everyone else better, it’s obvious
It’s hard to believe a left-sided defender could have such an impact on a team as a whole. But that is what’s happened with Jack O’Connell.
His presence, performance levels, and attitude obviously bled into the rest of the United squad. We’ve all heard the stories of how he is in training. And it’s clear that something has been lost from this squad since ‘JoC’ picked up his injury.
Players like Fleck and Stevens have looked shadows of themselves with O’Connell not alongside them. It just proves how important he is for this Sheffield United team.
Selfishly, we hope O’Connell returns ASAP for United. But overall, we just want to see JoC back playing. It’s a brutal injury he’s had and one that we all hope he can overcome.