Sheffield United: Derek Geary says young guns will be ready for Birmingham City test

Derek Geary says Sheffield United’s recent victory over Birmingham City will count for nothing when the two clubs meet in the fourth round of the FA Youth Cup next month.

Goals from Angelo Capello, Reon Potts and Jordan Doherty helped United’s under-18’s to a 4-2 win over the rivals from the Midlands in a Professional Development League fixture three weeks ago.

With Geary’s side now set to face City again following Tuesday night’s third round victory over Burton Albion, the former United defender said: “It’s a different game, a different competition and they’ll bring their strongest lads down from the under-23’s because it’s such a prestigious tournament. So although we’ve already beaten them once already, I don’t think that’s going to have any bearing on what happens this time around. We’ll be up for it and we’ll be ready.”

Doherty was on target twice as United, the 2011 finalists, dispatched Albion 2-0 at Bramall Lane. Although Geary was unhappy with aspects of his team’s performance, he acknowledged: “People forget that, for a lot of these lads, pulling on a Sheffield United shirt at Bramall Lane is the biggest moment of their careers so far. Don’t underestimate what that means.

“So although we let the lads know we weren’t that pleased during the break, you’ve also got to take into account that it was bound to take a while for some of them to settle. Then, the more experienced lads like Regan (Slater, pictured) and Bomber (Sam Graham) came to the fore as you’d expect.”

“They’ll be much better for the experience,” Geary added. “And we’ll help them build on that next time out.”