Sheffield United: Liverpool and Rangers traits prompt warning about QPR

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Michael Beale is using some of the tricks he learnt at Liverpool and Rangers to help Queens Park Rangers fulfil their potential, according to Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom.
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The 42-year-old took charge of the Londoners over the summer, following spells as Steven Gerrard’s assistant both in Glasgow and Aston Villa, having previously worked with Anfield’s under-23 squad.

Speaking ahead of QPR’s visit to Bramall Lane tomorrow, Heckingbottom, who performed a similar role for United before replacing Slavisa Jokanovic in November, said: “I can see traits from Liverpool to Rangers, things I saw when I was at Hibernian and Michael was there at Ibrox. He’s getting his ideas across now and he’s got some really good, talented players. Michael will have strong ideas about the game.”

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QPR make the journey north fifth in the table, after winning two and drawing one of their last three outings. United are still top of the Championship, but saw their lead over second placed Norwich City cut to a point having been held to a draw by Birmingham City last weekend. United’s only defeat so far this term came at Watford, during this season’s opening round of fixtures.

“Of course we want to keep the unbeaten run going,” Heckingbottom continued. “But we also want to win games. It’s all about the wins. If we’re drawing, then we’ll always go for the win even though I understand that will cost us at times. But it’s the way we want to be.”

The injury problems which have complicated Heckingbottom’s selections of late showed signs of easing before the clash with City. Jayden Bogle made his first appearance of the campaign as a second-half substitute while United’s coaching staff are hopeful Anel Ahmedhodzic will not require a month to recover from the thigh problem he sustained before reporting for international duty with Bosnia and Herzegovina. Officials at the Bosnian FA released a statement, notifying their supporters of Ahmedhodzic’s predicament, stating that his damaged muscle would take “at least” a month to heal.

Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom: Simon Bellis / SportimageSheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom: Simon Bellis / Sportimage
Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom: Simon Bellis / Sportimage

“We didn’t get anything else (after City),” Heckingbottom confirmed. “So that’s good. Everyone who took part in that has trained again.”