Sheffield United: The moment that convinced The Blades they really can beat Arsenal
George Baldock says running Liverpool so close has convinced Sheffield United's players they can beat the biggest names in the Premier League, as Arsenal prepare to visit Bramall Lane on Monday.
Chris Wilder's side came within a whisker of becoming the first team to take points off the reigning European champions this season when the two clubs met last month, with Georginio Wijnaldum's fortuitous second-half finish eventually settling the contest.
Although he later described that result as "frustrating", Baldock and his team mates were applauded by Jurgen Klopp as they left the pitch and, ahead of next week's meeting with the Londoners, the wing-back believes that game could be a psychologically defining moment in United's season.
"We respect all these players, they don’t have careers they’ve had by chance," Baldock said. "But we have worked so hard to get there and our manager won’t let us be starry-eyed. We deserve to be on the same field as these players. We are in the same division and we get 3 points for winning like they do too. We respect the opposition, but when you cross the white line, everyone is equal and do everything we can to win."
United have prepared for the game ranked 13th in the table, after winning plaudits for persisting with the adventurous approach which helped them win promotion last term. Arsenal are third, despite seeing Unai Emery's tactics and selections questioned in recent weeks.
"Their manager has got his way of playing there and it will take time but you can’t ignore the amount of top-class players they have on show in every position," Baldock said. "They have got great strength in depth and a really tough team to beat. We will go into it full of confidence and try and implement our game, while respecting opposition and hopefully put on a show like Liverpool but hopefully come away with some points."