Sheffield United: Why the team comes first for Blades star David McGoldrick despite racking up personal milestone in victory over Hull City
His 14th and 15th goals of a remarkable season put Sheffield United on the brink of a place in the Premier League, but David McGoldrick was happy to put the team before himself once more when the post-match talk turned to another personal milestone in his career.
McGoldrick’s brace - which sealed a 3-0 victory at Hull City on Easter Monday which, coupled with Leeds’ defeat at Brentford, left United on the cusp of promotion – also brought up a career milestone of 100 league goals for the 31-year-old.
After joking that he was now looking to catch teammate Billy Sharp’s goals tally – which this season made him the highest scorer in English football since the turn of the century – McGoldrick, who reached his century with a stunning curling effort from outside the area, admitted: “It was a nice way to bring up the hundred.
“It is something I haven’t really thought about lately, because of everything else, but it is something I am pleased to say that I have done.
“The main thing, though, is the group. Getting the win we needed and wanted. That comes before anything else; that is how we are. The lads who have come in are doing brilliantly.
“That shows how important the group is and how everyone has bought in.”
Results over the Easter weekend – six points from six for United, back-to-back losses for Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds – mean that United could be promoted as early as this Sunday, if they beat McGoldrick’s former club Ipswich Town on Saturday and Leeds fail to get all three points against in-form Aston Villa on Sunday afternoon a day later.
“We’re only human,” said McGoldrick when asked about the nerves of a promotion battle.
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“Everyone knows the situation with looking at scores and everything… it’s human nature.
“There might be a bit of nerves sometimes but we can only go out and play our game. At Hull, the early goal helped and then we took control from there.”
Meanwhile, Leeds boss Bielsa admitted his side are now outsiders in the race to claim an automatic promotion place following Friday’s defeat at Brentford.
“I am very sad with today’s loss and it’s going to be very difficult but as long as maths say something we will follow this," he said.
“But we know our opportunity is now less. We need to look at why we have to have twice as many chances to score as our opponent.
“If we had normal efficiency we would have 10 or 12 points more than we have but that’s not the case so now we have to put all our energy in the options we still have.