FIVE things we learned from Sheffield United 1 Coventry City 0

Sheffield United's bench during the minute's applause for Alan Hodgkinson and Martyn Harrison
Sheffield United's bench during the minute's applause for Alan Hodgkinson and Martyn Harrison
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Sheffield United ground out a hard-fought 1-0 win over second-placed Coventry City at Bramall Lane on Sunday with Billy Sharp popping up with the winner.

The victory was United's first in the league since the 3-0 win over Fleetwood on October 20.

George Long pulls off a fabulous save against Coventry

George Long pulls off a fabulous save against Coventry

Here are five things we learned from the match:

A win's a win

To put it mildly, it wasn't for the purists, but if you are a United fan does that matter? If you haven't won for nearly two months and are playing against one of the best teams in the division, you do what you have to do to get the points and that's surely the main objective. Nigel Adkins has spoken about trying to find the right balance between doggedness and attractive football, but if the former if putting points on the board then for the sake of a promotion push, the latter can be sacrificed.

David Edgar makes a huge difference to the defence

The Canadian central defender made a return to the Blades backline and made an immediate impression. While there remained a few nervy moments, as have been the norm with United this year, Edgar brought an assured presence with his reading of the game and his strength on the ground and in the air. If they can keep him fit then there'll be more clean sheets on the way.

George Long keeps getting better

The young stopper's highly-documented opening day shocker can now be banished - we need never mention it again. Against Coventry he was excellent again and seems to be growing in confidence with every game. His stop from Adam Armstrong in a rare chance for either time in the first half was impressive but the tip over the bar from Ruben Lameiras in the second half was superb.

McEveley will need to calm it down

Clearly United had gone out with a physical approach in mind, but there's being physical and there's being 1960's physical. McEveley has come in for a lot of criticism from fans this season and so if he's being told to get stuck in then it's understandable the defender might be going out to prove a point. However, how he got away with a yellow card for that tackle on Lameiras is baffling. If United are to maintain this way of playing then some might have to rein it in a touch.

Blades stalwarts were honoured perfectly

It was an emotional day at Bramall Lane with United paying their respects to two well-known faces around the club. Legendary former goalkeeper Alan Hodgkinson and club photographer of 30 years Martyn Harrison both sadly passed away last week and the floral tribute, the minute's applause and the shirt depicting the name 'Hodgy' behind the goal was the perfect way to remember two greats in their field.

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