Sheffield United: Why it would be a mistake to under-estimate Ipswich Town’s ability to the promotion applecart
Ipswich Town will arrive at Bramall Lane determined to wreck Sheffield United's hopes of all but sealing their place in the Premier League next season, Chris Wilder has warned.
Although Paul Lambert's side have already begun planning for life in the third tier of English football after being relegated earlier this month, Wilder, the United manager, insists his players could hand third-placed Leeds a lifeline back into the automatic promotion places if they take the visitors lightly.
United are second, three points clear of Marcelo Bielsa's squad with two matches remaining, after beating Hull City on Easter Monday. They also boast a vastly superior goal difference, which barring an 11 goal swing, is effectively worth an extra point.
"People who say footballers have nothing to play for don't understand the professional mentality," Wilder said. "There's always something to play for, be it promotion, survival or pride. And pride is a strong driving force. That's why these lads are where they are, why they've made the grade."
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Although Town have won only four times in the Championship since August, Wilder's opposite number Paul Lambert believes their performance during this week's defeat to Swansea City warranted more.
"It's been the same all season really, we had some good moments and just been punished at the wrong end of the pitch," he said.
"The lads deserve a lot of credit for keeping going and we've got two massive games that can affect, depending on the results, two or maybe three teams."