SHEFFIELD United suffered a Maddening day as two goals from Paddy Madden sentenced them to a home defeat.
Only eight points separated these two teams ahead of kick-off.
But, in terms of stature, Sheffield United and Yeovil Town are worlds apart.
Danny Wilson’s side, who boast over 120 years of Football and Premier League experience, boast an average attendance of 18,343 so far this term despite slipping into English football’s third tier.
The visitors, who usually play in front of crowds below the 4,000 mark, only clawed themselves out of the Conference in 2003.
Yet, as both Wilson and his trusted lieutenant Chris Morgan had testified beforehand, United were taking nothing for granted against Gary Johnson’s charges.
Indeed, although United enjoyed plenty of possession before the break, they did not create the better chances.
Yeovil, but for a little bit more care with their final pass or shot, could easily have been several goals to the good when they trooped down the tunnel for the half-time break.
Nevertheless, it took them less than five minutes to rectify that situation when they emerged for the start of the second period.
MADDEN, one of Johnson’s brightest players, threaded a low drive past Long and into the back of the net after receiving McAllister’s pass and cutting inside his marker. The Yeovil marksman wheeled away from the Kop and celebrated wildly with the visitors’ bench while the home crowd signalled its disapproval.
Not with Madden. But with United’s display so far.
A rare mistake from Long, in the 65th minute, presented MADDEN with his second of the contest and halted United’s momentum. The young goalkeeper dithered as he tried to control Higginbotham’s back pass and handed the Yeovil’s forward with the simple task of running the ball into an empty net from barely two yards out.It was a costly error.
But one could only feel for Long as boos rang out from the Main Stand and some supporters headed for the exits with 25 minutes remaining. Especially as, by and large, he has acquitted himself so well since being handed his opportunity.
The remainder of the game was played out to a soundtrack of moans, groans and general annoyance.
Some fans shouted ‘Ole’ when United players exchanged passes.