Sheffield United continued their impressive march towards a European place with another fine win over Norwich City yesterday.
The Blades saw off the Canaries thanks to a Billy Sharp header in the first half. The experienced striker converted expertly from John Lundstram’s cross to give his side another well-earned three points.
Chris Wilder opted to bring the aforementioned Lundstram back into the fold. Having missed out to Sander Berge in the Premier League in recent weeks, Lundstram was out to seize his chance. And seize his chance he did.
However, aside from Lundstram’s fine ball in for the goal and overall display, it proved that this Sheffield United squad has the stomach and fight to keep competing for a European place.
After selecting more or less the same XI for most of the season barring the front two, Chris Wilder has been given some food for thought of late. Along with Lundstram, a number of his squad players have proved they can step in when needed.
A squad game
As with any successful team, it’s about playing together as a full squad and not just an XI. While the likes of John Fleck, Oli Norwood, and John Egan are more or less nailed on starters, Wilder needs to be sure his back-ups are up to the task.
In recent weeks he has got the perfect response from his squad players. Luke Freeman was brilliant in midweek as United beat Reading in the FA Cup. Furthermore, Ben Osborn has been excellent when stepping in for Enda Stevens in recent weeks.
Add that to the contributions from Lundstram then the likes of McGoldrick off the bench and suddenly, the Blades squad looks well-equipped to compete.
Some big players aren’t even getting a look-in either. Richairo Zivkovic has yet to make an appearance while Panos Retsos only got a handful of minutes in the cup win at the Madejski. Lys Mousset is another who is not getting minutes at the moment despite having a good season.
All in all, it appears the Blades are well set to keep competing. January was an excellent window for the club and Chris Wilder will be delighted that all 25 players in his Premier League squad are contributing as much as they can.