Sheffield United: ‘Murray can inspire Blades’

Jamie Murphy says Sheffield United can be inspired by Andy Murray's super Wimbledon win
Jamie Murphy says Sheffield United can be inspired by Andy Murray's super Wimbledon win
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Having opted to begin their pre-season preparations in Scotland, Sheffield United found themselves englufed by an Andy Murray induced euphoria yesterday.

The refined gentility of Centre Court might bear little resemblence to the cauldrons of hate where footballers regularly go about their business.

But Jamie Murphy is adamant that David Weir’s squad can learn valuable lessons from his compatriot’s victory at SW19.

The most important being a respect for the theory of marginal gains.

“When the new manager came in, the first thing he said was that if you keep doing the same things then you’ll end up getting the same results,” Murphy told The Star. “There’s been a few different bits, a few different ideas introduced and so hopefully that will be to our benefit.

“You can see Andy has worked so hard to get the best out of himself and you’ve got to have the same approach as a footballer.

“I think anyone involved in sport can take heart and be inspired by what he’s done. You don’t have to go too far back when everyone was telling Andy that he wasn’t good enough. But he just ignored that and is one of the best in the world.”

Murray admitted following last year’s French Open that Ivan Lendl’s appointment as coach had not radically altered his approach.

Rather, the 26-year-old explained, the Czech’s attention to detail was responsible for triggering the chain of events which culminated in Sunday’s historic triumph over Novak Djokovic.

“If you can pick 10 small things to work on and change,” Murray said. “That can turn into a big difference.”

Murphy, speaking ahead of United’s friendly against Raith Rovers tomorrow, echoed that sentiment, insisting David Weir’s decision to break appoint two assistant managers highlighted hismeticulous nature.

“The manager is trying to get us to do things in a different way,” the former Scotland under-21 international said. “He’s got strong principles about how he wants us to play and bit by bit he’s introducing that into what we do.”

United, like Team Murray, are also trying to breed a ‘no excuses’ culture behind the scenes ahead of next month’s return to competitive action.

Successive defeats in the divisional play-offs still rankle. But, Murphy insisted, they have only made United more determined to deliver promotion next time round.

“We had a big disappointment last time around because our aim was to go up. But you’ve got to bottle that feeling and use it to spur you on and make sure it doesn’t happen again.

“The same thing that Andy has done.”