Sheffield United: Skipper says Blades are battle-hardened

Michael Doyle says Sheffield United are no longer a soft touch  � BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
Michael Doyle says Sheffield United are no longer a soft touch � BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
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It is, by his own admission, a “massive ask.”

But Michael Doyle, the former Republic of Ireland international, last night warned it would be foolish to write-off Sheffield United’s play-off chances just yet.

Nigel Clough, the League One club’s manager, insisted following Monday’s draw at Preston North End that qualifying for the end of season knockouts was an improbable rather than impossible dream.

And, echoing those sentiments, Doyle said: “I still think it might happen. We’ve got to be greedy now and see where it takes us.

“The start of the campaign was a catastrophe. But things have gone full circle now and we just want to win matches.

“If we do that, then with our match in hand, we could go third and that puts the pressure on those around us.

“I don’t like talking about other teams because it can seem a bit disrespectful. But it’s only going to take some of those to lose a couple, which is quite feasible, and then it’s game on again.”

United trail sixth placed Peterborough by 10 points with 11 fixtures remaining but prepare for the visit of Wolverhampton Wanderers having won 10 of their previous 11 outings in all competitions and kept eight consecutive clean sheets. Clough’s predecessor David Weir was in charge when United lost 2-0 at Molineux six months ago and Doyle said: “Things are very different now. We were much softer then.

“It’s the same players but we’ve got a much more hard edge. We passed them off the park in the first-half last time and should have had things wrapped-up by the break.”

*Twitter: @JamesShield1