At first glance, picking a team unbeaten in 13 League One outings appears the easiest thing in the world.
But Chris Wilder, the Sheffield United manager, has revealed he wrestled with some major selection dilemmas during the build-up to Saturday’s meeting with Shrewsbury Town.
“There are always real decisions to be made,” Wilder admitted. “There’s no way the team just picks itself. We’re not afraid of making changes if we think changes are required. And that’s a thought process, something we look at and consider as a staff, before every single game.”
Wilder, whose team dispatched Shrewsbury 2-1, used Stefan Scougall’s omission from the starting 11 at Chesterfield eight days ago to emphasise his point. The former Livingston midfielder scored for the third time in only four appearances during this month’s FA Cup victory over Leyton Orient but was later withdrawn because of a slight knock. Scougall was on target again against Paul Hurst’s side.
Wilder, admitting Jack O’Connell has also been unfortunate not to enjoy a more prominent role since being taken ill before United’s recent victory at Greenhous Meadow, said: “If Scougall has stayed on the pitch against Orient, it would have been difficult to leave him out. Even though he only trained for a few days before the next one, he made us make a decision.
“Jack O’Connell has done nothing wrong. He was ill. But Bash (Chris Basham) stepped in and did well.”