Sheffield United’s players must divorce themselves from off-the-pitch events surrounding their Capital One Cup tie against West Ham, Chris Morgan has warned, or risk exiting the competition at the second round stage.
Tonight’s match, the first meeting between these two clubs since the Carlos Tevez Affair seven years ago, threatens to reopen the debate surrounding United’s controversial relegation from the Premier League when their hosts were fined rather than deducted points for breaching regulations governing third party ownership after signing the Argentine and his compatriot Javier Mascherano.
United were awarded £20m in compensation after arguing Tevez, who scored the goal which secured West Ham’s top-flight status, should have been ineligible for selection when the terms of his contractual relationship with Media Sports Investments, a London based fund, were eventually disclosed.
Morgan, now a member of the visitors’ coaching staff, captained United throughout the 2006/07 campaign but told The Star: “The way we are looking at this is that we’re going to a Premier League club and to a ground where the atmosphere is always fantastic. It’s a great stage to go and play football on.
“We know we’ll be up against it but we also want to build and go through.”