Sheffield United: Promotion expert Oliver Norwood outlines steps Blades must take to win promotion to Premier League this season
Promotion expert Oliver Norwood has outlined the steps he believes Sheffield United must take if they are to reach the Premier League this season.
The Northern Ireland international is well placed to comment, too, having been a prominent member of the Brighton and Fulham sides which won promotion from the Championship in the last two seasons.
His bid to make that three from three years took another step forward last Saturday when United beat West Brom at The Hawthorns, and the 27-year-old said: “The key, really, is being consistent and it's as simple as that.
“Not to get too carried away when we do win and not to get too down if we don’t. It's about finding a balance.
“But based on our level of performances, we deserve to be where we are and we’ve got to keep driving it forward.
“As footballers you want to be involved in big games and big nights, games that mean something.
“I said earlier in the month that we don't want our season to be over in March after the next international break, sat there going ‘there’s always next season’.
“Because you never know if that will be the case. Football moves on very quickly and we’ve got to make the most of this season.
“Because, although I don't want to put a curse on it, we have a massive opportunity to reach the Premier League this year.”
Next up for United in their quest to do just that is the small matter of a trip to Hillsborough for the Steel City Derby, against Wednesday next Monday night.
The Owls, managed by former United boss Steve Bruce, have endured a disappointing campaign while, to compound their misery, their biggest rivals have launched another assault on promotion.
“You’re in the wrong game if you can’t enjoy playing at the top of the Championship," Norwood smiled.
“There's no pressure on us at all. The experts say we shouldn’t be where we are, but we'll keep proving them, and everyone else who doubts us, wrong.
“We’re not where we are by accident, let's be honest. We've just got to keep driving it forward in the 12 cup finals we have left until the end of the season.”
Norwood escaped the threat of possibly missing the derby against Wednesday, who faced Brentford last night at Hillsborough, when he came through Saturday’s victory over West Brom without picking up his tenth caution of the season.
Norwood will miss two games if he is booked before the end of United's 37th league game.