Sheffield United: One problem The Blades have been trying to solve during the international break

Coaching staff at Sheffield United have been working to improve their team’s response to conceding a goal, after identifying it as an area of concern during the opening 11 matches of the Championship season.

Friday, 8th October 2021, 11:51 am

Although Slavisa Jokanovic no longer believes confidence is an issue at Bramall Lane following last term’s relegation from the Premier League, the United manager has acknowledged his players can still respond better to set-backs.

The work Jokanovic and his assistants have been undertaking during training this week focuses on psychology rather than tactical aspects of the game plan they have been devising since the last international break.

“We don’t want to (concede) but if we do, we must know we don’t have to score one back straight away - unless it happens at the very end of a game of course and we go behind,” Jokanovic explained.

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“Sometimes, it is not always good or necessary to go chasing. You should stick to your plan and trust in it.”

Although Jokanovic insists United have made progress in this regard - citing their growing belief in his strategy as a factor behind the recent upturn in performance levels - events at AFC Bournemouth before the international break persuaded him to make it a key item on his ‘to do’ list. Despite arguing - with plenty of justification - that both goals Scott Parker’s side scored during the 2-1 defeat should have been disallowed, the Serb noted how the second came only minutes after the hosts had equalised from the penalty spot.

“Sometimes, just pause and show your knowledge,” Jokanovic said.

Sheffield United must smarten up after conceding believes their manager Slavisa Jokanovic: Simon Bellis / Sportimage
Slavisa Jokanovic: Simon Bellis / Sportimage