SHEFFIELD United defender Danny Higginbotham is expected to start tomorrow’s League One fixture with Portsmouth, writes James Shield.
Higginbotham, who arrived at Bramall Lane in January after leaving Stoke, has been earmarked to replace the suspended Harry Maguire when Chris Morgan’s side visit Fratton Park.
Maguire was among three players dismissed during Tuesday’s draw with Brentford but will be eligible for selection against Crewe Alexandra next week.
Chris Morgan, the United manager, said: “Obviously we’d rather not have people missing but we’ve got Danny and a few others ready to come in and do a job.
“He (Higginbotham) is an experienced player with bags of ability. He can operate in the middle and Matty Hill is capable of stepping across and playing there as well.”
Brentford’s Clayton Donaldson and Tony Craig also saw red in midweek with the latter handed a three match ban.
Maguire had to be shepherded down the tunnel by Morgan after being sent-off for a seemingly innocuous foul.
“I thought Harry was very unfortunate,” he said. “I can understand why he felt upset but we have had a quiet word with him about his reaction because, unfortunately, once the referee has made a decision you are not going to change it.”
United are fourth in the table with three games remaining. Portsmouth are 22nd after losing 3-2 at Griffin Park six days ago.
United striker Dave Kitson represented Guy Whittingham’s side last term and the Portsmouth manager said: “He has done well there.
“He suits the style of football they play where they get the ball up to him early and they look to put pressure on your defence.
“We know he’s going to be a danger but they have got a few in the side and that’s why they are near the top of the league.”