Sheffield United issue injury update on Sander Berge, Jack O'Connell, Chris Basham and Billy Sharp

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Sheffield United will resist the temptation to rush Sander Berge back into action after Paul Heckingbottom, the Blades manager, revealed his hope to have the Norwegian midfielder back available before the end of the current season.

Berge, who became United’s record signing when he arrived in a £22m deal from Genk last January, has been missing since December after damaging a hamstring against Manchester United.

The 23-year-old was recently called up by Norway for the last international break, the midfielder was pictured back on the grass in training despite not being close to fitness, and Heckingbottom said: “Sander’s at the back end of it, so we’re hoping to get him back involved in training with the players next week.

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“But with the amount of time he’s been out, we’re not putting pressure on him. When he’s back in, he’ll be responding to the ball and players and we’ll work him really hard. If we can get a couple of weeks good training in him, we’ll be able to get him back on the pitch.”

Heckingbottom welcomed back John Egan at Leeds last weekend, but also lost Jayden Bogle and George Baldock to concussion-related issues with Chris Basham, Billy Sharp and Jack O’Connell also on the sidelines.

“Sharpy and Bash have been rehabbing out on the pitch and time will tell, how they respond and if they can keep progressing,” the United boss revealed.

“Jack is still going through a process, he’s going through the steps.

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“It’d be unfair to Jack and the staff to say: ‘We need him by this date’.

Sheffield United's Sander Berge (Photo by Mike Egerton - Pool/Getty Images)Sheffield United's Sander Berge (Photo by Mike Egerton - Pool/Getty Images)
Sheffield United's Sander Berge (Photo by Mike Egerton - Pool/Getty Images)

"He’ll be led by how he responds to his rehab and treatment and I think that’s the most sensible way. It’s about getting it right rather than getting it done quickly.”

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