AUDIO: Sheffield United keeper Howard refuses to press the panic button

Sheffield United goalkeeper Mark Howard � BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
Sheffield United goalkeeper Mark Howard � BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
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Mark Howard remains convinced Sheffield United will mount a serious challenge for promotion this season despite their disappointing start to the new League One campaign.

Nigel Clough’s side visit Peterborough tonight placed 22nd in the embryonic table after losing both of their opening games.

But Howard, the United goalkeeper, said: “We are disappointed with where we are but you’ve got to remember it’s still early doors and that there are lots of matches to be played.

“We’ll be working hard to turn things around and, to be honest, I don’t actually think we are too far away. It’s all about small margins.”

Clough, speaking at the Redtooth Academy yesterday, called on supporters to show patience as a squad containing 11 new faces moulds itself into an effective unit.

“It didn’t happen straight away last season,” Clough, who guided United from 21st to seventh after taking charge in October, said. “Come February we were still in the relegation zone but then you saw towards the end the momentum that built up.

“We don’t want to be down there and the longer it goes, the harder it gets. But getting a team to be exactly that, a team, is all about building partnerships.”

Echoing those sentiments, Howard said: “We’ve had chances to win both of our games in the league and we should have seen those out. It’s difficult for me because, in this position, it’s very a much more individual thing.

“But from what I can see, we’ve just got to capitalise more and take our chances. That is going to happen when everyone gets up to speed because it always does with good players if you continue working hard.”

“We didn’t say we were the favourites to go up at the start,” Howard added. “That was the bookies.

“But whatever anyone else says, our aim was to get promoted and that is still exactly the same. Nothing, as far as we are concerned anyway, has changed.”

LISTEN to James Shield’s interview with Sheffield United goalkeeper Mark Howard