Sheffield United: Chris Wilder hails Bramall Lane's unsung heroes
Manager Chris Wilder says those on the fringes of his starting eleven are as responsible for Sheffield United's climb to third in the Championship table as those who feature every week.
In an affirmation of his belief the group must always come first, Wilder cited the refusal of players such as John Lundstram and Mark Duffy to "sulk" after finding themselves on the bench in recent weeks.
Although Duffy has since regained his place, emerging as a driving force behind the 4-1 victory over Aston Villa, Wilder said: "The attitude of my senior pro's has been brilliant. Everything comes down to that.
"The attitude of Billy and Duff when they were out of the side was exceptional. They didn't sulk. They just got on with the job. The same goes for John and Stears (Richard Stearman) too." "Everyone is an equal part of the group," Wilder added. "You have to have that mentality if you want to achieve anything. If you don't, you'll never stand a chance. Everybody here, every single player, is a part of what we are trying to do."
United entered the international break only two points behind second-placed Middlesbrough after winning all of their last four games. The highlight of those, Saturday's thrashing of Steve Bruce's side, saw both Duffy and Sharp write their names on the scoresheet. Oliver Norwood and Jack O'Connell were also on target while Lundstram received acclaim for a hard but fair tackle on Jack Grealish after being summoned from the bench after the break.
"We've done well but our feet are on the ground," Wilder said. "Some people might want to get carried away but we don't because we're only half a dozen games in. People will also be saying good things about us and, to be honest, the lads deserve that. But nothing has been achieved yet. There's no days off is you want to do that."