What the opposition saw | Southampton (H)
After 0-1 loss to Southampton, Dem Blades caught up with @whatneilthinks to get his views on the game.
As a spectacle, what would 'the neutral' have thought?
I think a neutral would have enjoyed that game, despite the lack of goals. Both teams had plenty of chances and it really could have gone either way.
What did you make to both sides' performances?
Today I think it was quite an even game. Southampton began to control the game second half, but Blades still had their chances. The extra attacking quality from Boufal and Djenepo won the game.
How was your trip to Bramall Lane, and what did you reckon to the atmosphere?
I've been to Bramall Lane several times before as my Dad was a Blade. Always been impressed with the fans as every stand gets behind them and roars them forward.
What were your overall thoughts on the game, and was it a fair result?
I don't think the Blades deserved to lose. The disallowed goal was justified - however, Sharps red card was harsh and I'm not sure how VAR doesn't give a penalty for the Ward-Prowse handball. That said, both keepers had superb games and kept the score down.
What did you make to Sheffield United's style of play, what were our strengths and weaknesses, did you overcome them?
Blades strength is their unique tactics. The overlapping centre-backs are tricky to play against and we did struggle with that at times. Blades weakness is they don't have a technically gifted playmaker. That extra quality from Djenepo is what won Southampton the game. I don't feel like Blades have that kind of player in their ranks.
We have recently played 4-2-2-2 but yesterday we played 3-4-2-1... which I am sure was partly down to trying to handle the extra Blades players coming forward (switching to a back 5 with wing-backs dropping in) but also allowing us to break and expose Egan whilst those centre backs were committed forward.
Who were Sheffield United's key men?
Norwood - his range of passing and ability to play the right pass with such precision, will be an asset this season. McGoldrick. He is a totally different player to the one that played for Southampton. He works hard and should have scored today. Dean Henderson - that guy will win you points this season. Superb shot-stopper, who I'm sure will take the gloves from De Gea at Man Utd in the future.
If you could steal one of our players, who would it be? Norwood
I really like his range of passing and ability to switch the ball so quickly and accurately.
Will the Blades stay up this season, yes or no?
Yes, but they might need that technically gifted attacker in January - one that can win a game, even when the team isn't playing at their best.