NEILL Collins has warned his Sheffield United teammates to stay cool irrespective of their result against League One leaders Charlton Athletic.
The Londoners arrive at Bramall Lane today looking to defend their unbeaten record in the competition this season.
United slipped to third in the table following last weekend’s shock defeat by Wycombe Wanderers and Collins said: “If we win our next three games then everyone is going to get carried away.
“If we lose them then everyone is going to be low and despondent.
“What we’ve got to do is let the media talk about all of the stuff like that and not be bothered by it whatever happens.
“As players we know that the most important thing is to be in contention around January time.
“Nothing gets decided in October. Absolutely nothing.
“And that’s whether results are good or bad. It’s a long hard season.”
Collins was a member of the Leeds squad which gained promotion back to the Championship just over a year ago before joining United midway through last season.
Roundly criticised as his new club, still managed by Danny Wilson’s predecessor Micky Adams, spiralled towards relegation, he has been one of the former Northern Ireland international’s most consistent performers this term.
“Listen, I do feel as if I’m playing better but, to be honest, winning games and a settled back four has got a lot to do with it,” Collins said.
“If you’re winning then everyone always says you are doing well even if you could do better. If you’re losing then it doesn’t matter about individual displays because people say that none of the players are any good.
“The only game that you want to be judged on is your next game.
“Having the same back four, though, week in and week out pretty much has definitely helped.
“The manager before had to change things around a lot, which didn’t help.”