Conor Sammon has revealed how criticism of their recent performances has only strengthened team spirit within Sheffield United’s first-team squad.
And, speaking ahead of tonight’s League One fixture against Shrewsbury Town, the centre-forward insisted Nigel Adkins’ team are still focused on winning promotion despite slipping to 11th in the table following last weekend’s draw at Walsall.
“If someone is having a tough time out there, you are all in it together,” Sammon said. “If you have the best possible chance of winning, the person who is getting stick or criticism needs to be firing on all cylinders. You have that mentality of helping your mate next to you or them helping you, vice versa.
“It’s a natural mindset and we have a very good group of players who want to win and be part of something successful. We want to be promoted this season, that’s our aim and ambition and it hasn’t changed.”
Sammon, on loan from Derby County, acknowledged United must be more “ruthless” after falling behind in their previous three league outings.
“Scoring the first goal, being ruthless and taking chances is important,” he said. “When people come to us and go 1-0 up, the game is completely different.
“Most visiting teams’ team-talk, when they come to Bramall Lane, is to keep it tight for 10 or 15 minutes and trying to get home fans on their backs. That’s their game plan and we know teams will try and frustrate us and nick that first goal and then maybe look to sit in.”
“Things can quickly change in football,” Sammon added. “You can be rock-bottom and then all of a sudden, you can go on a run or vice versa. Every game is different and it’s up to us to really stick together and show that togetherness that is needed to go on a run. It needs to start somewhere, so why not against Shrewsbury? We need to go and play to our strengths and get three points and really build momentum.”
Sammon, who could start this evening’s game, is adamant United will soon reap the benefits of Adkins’ methods.
“We need to stick to our game plan and what we do in training. We don’t just look to go out onto the training pitch and do things willy-nilly.
“The staff always look at areas that our opponents have weaknesses at and our sessions are tailored towards us being comfortable with exposing their weaknesses and getting the better of them.”