Sheffield United: Defender addresses concerns about the international break
George Baldock has dismissed suggestions the international break could stall Sheffield United's momentum as they chase Premier League football next season.
Fourteen days after beating fellow contenders Leeds at Elland Road, Chris Wilder's second-placed squad return to action when Bristol City visit Bramall Lane tomorrow afternoon.
Although members of United's coaching staff privately expressed their frustration at the break in the schedule before establishing a warm weather training camp in Spain, Baldock insisted the trip to Valencia had allowed Wilder's players to recharge their batteries following tough fixtures against Brentford and Marcelo Bielsa's team.
"I think the break came at a good time in that we had played a really tough game against Brentford, up against a brilliant side with ten men for the majority of the game, and then went straight into Leeds.
"They're also a really, really good side and the pitch was quite boggy . We ran around a lot in both those two games so you could say it was a good time on the back of that."
United returned to England last week, with Spain's national team checking into the rooms they had just vacated.
Wilder joked his side had been "booted out" by Luis Enrique's men, who were preparing for Euro 2020 qualifiers against Norway and Malta, during his pre-match press conference.
"We were out of the rooms at 7am," he laughed. "The hotel were painting doors, cutting grass and filling the pool while we were in reception."
"It allowed us to rest up and assess what we can do better," Baldock continued.
"Getting away was good, too. A chance to do something and enjoy some team bonding.
"We had a bit of training, some nice food and get some sun as well at a really nice hotel. It was perfect, to be honest.
"All the boys have come back into training, feeling really sharp. The international boys have come back full of confidence, too."
Baldock, aged 26, is chasing the third promotion of his career after achieving the feat with former clubs MK Dons and Oxford United.
"My two previous promotions, there was not an international break so, this was different," he said. "Some might have wanted to carry on but the breaks are part of the Championship.
"We just look at the next game. The boys feel refreshed and raring to go. And excited to play in front of a packed Bramall Lane."