Doyle’s plan for United self-help

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MICHAEL Doyle insists Sheffield United must focus on themselves and not their promotion rivals in the battle to climb out of League One.

With league leaders Charlton Athletic, Sheffield Wednesday, Huddersfield Town and MK Dons all failing to win last weekend, the Blades moved up to third in the table after registering their sixth victory on the spin at Bournemouth.

Now the South Yorkshire outfit are just seven points behind the Addicks and only two adrift of the second-placed Owls.

Central midfielder Doyle is warning his teammates not to take their eye off the ball as United look to escape the third tier of English football at the first time of asking.

He told The Star: “We have to worry about ourselves. There is no point at looking at what everybody else is doing and hoping they drop points.

“We have got to concentrate on what we can control. We can’t afford to look too far ahead. We have got two very tough home games coming up against Notts County and Hartlepool and they are going to make it very difficult for us to break them down.”

Speculation is mounting George Long, Ched Evans and Matthew Lowton could be prised away from Bramall Lane come the New Year.

It would reduce their wage bill, believed to be the division’s highest.

Manager Danny Wilson says he wants to bring in reinforcements but accepts players will have to be shipped out to balance the books.

Doyle said: “Nobody knows what’s going to happen in January but I’m sure the manager and the staff will have the right replacements and right characters in mind if we do lose anybody.”