SHEFFIELD UNITED: Blades ace goes on the attack in bid for promotion

Positive instinct: Tony McMahon
Positive instinct: Tony McMahon
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TONY McMahon, the Sheffield United defender, has vowed not to curb his attacking instincts despite the ultra-competitive nature of League One this season.

United, who hope to preserve their unbeaten start to the new season when Bury visit Bramall Lane on Saturday, survived a gruelling test of their credentials at Scunthorpe last weekend.

Despite finishing the match with only nine men, Danny Wilson’s side secured a point courtesy of a late Neill Collins header following Leon Clarke’s opener.

McMahon, whose set-piece created the opportunity for his teammate to score, said: “I always like to get forward and so I always look for the opportunity.

“It’s the way I’ve always played my football ever since starting out so that’s what I’ll carry on doing.

“If I can contribute in attacking areas then that can only be a good thing. But, as a full-back, I’m aware of what my first responsibilities are and I’m not going to lose sight of that.”

If McMahon’s hunch proves correct, United’s experience at Glanford Park will prove a template for the rest of the campaign.

Although red cards for Michael Doyle and Ryan Flynn, which Wilson subsequently decided to appeal, contributed to their problems, the division’s bottom club raised their game against opponents expected to challenge for a top-two finish.

“You can’t take anything for granted in football,” McMahon said. “Especially if you are one of the so-called ‘fancied’ clubs because nobody gives you anything.

“People want to beat you and it’s important to be prepared for that.”

Although Wilson is loathe to publicly heap praise on individuals - preferring instead to emphasise the importance of the group - privately the United manager regarded McMahon’s acquisition earlier this summer as something of a coup.

Having made an inconspicuous start to his United career, the 26-year-old’s recent form culminated in him delivering his most impressive display since parting company with Middlesbrough against Alan Knill’s men.

Speaking before the 1-1 draw with Scunthorpe, McMahon, who has represented England at under-16, 17 and 19 level, said: “I’m enjoying myself.”