Sheffield United: Blades issued with fresh challenge

Sheffield United manager Nigel Adkins
Sheffield United manager Nigel Adkins

Nigel Adkins has urged Sheffield United players not to let their performance levels drop during games.

But, after last weekend’s defeat by Crewe Alexandra saw them lose further ground on the early League One leaders, the 50-year-old insisted the return of influential players such as Bob Harris, Paul Coutts and Ryan Flynn should help his squad thrust themselves back into promotion contention.

With Bob Harris and Ryan Flynn both returning to the starting eleven at Gresty Road following injury, Adkins said: “I was pleased we could get Bob out there again because he’s one of those, until now, we’ve never been able to utilise. Flynny also had a good game in the full-back position.”

Coutts, previously of Championship club Derby County, has also impressed Adkins after recovering from a knee complaint but Adkins, issuing a new challenge to the midfielder, said: “Couttsy has been out for a long time and you could see the qualities both him and Dean (Hammond) have. But, again, can he do it for the full 90 minutes? That’s what he’s got to show us.”

Meanwhile Jamie McDonagh has been praised by Chester FC manager Steve Burr following his debut for the National League club. Burr, who signed the United forward on loan last week, introduced the striker as a second-half substitute during Saturday’s meeting with Forest Green Rovers.

Twitter: @JamesShield1

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