Blades’ men of experience leading by example

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DANNY Wilson has credited Sheffield United’s senior professionals with helping youngsters such as Ched Evans and Kevin McDonald fulfil their potential at Bramall Lane.

United manager Wilson was speaking after revealing that James Beattie’s “positive influence” behind the scenes made the former England international a valuable addition to his squad.

Asked whether Beattie’s knowledge and experience would coax even greater levels of performance out of fellow centre-forward Evans, Wilson told The Star: “Hopefully so, but I’ve got to say it’s not just James.

“Cressy (Richard Cresswell) is an absolute joy to work with because he gives his all in training day in and day out. He’s been in the game a long time but he still comes into work with a completely professional attitude, and Monty (Nick Montgomery) is exactly the same.

“If anyone coming through the ranks wants to follow an example of how to conduct themselves and go about their work then they need look no further than them.”

Beattie, who agreed a new contract running until the end of the season on Thursday, is suspended for today’s FA Cup tie against Birmingham City. Evans seems a certain starter after scoring 18 goals in 25 appearances this term.

Cresswell and Montgomery both hope to feature in the fourth-round tie. Winger Ryan Flynn is also available for selection after recovering from illness.