Sheffield United press conference: Thoughts turn to Bristol City as Blades boss Chris Wilder previews Ashton Gate clash

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The international break is just about over, and so thoughts turn towards Ashton Gate for Chris Wilder and his Sheffield United side.

The Blades boss will face the media this morning ahead of Saturday’s trip to Bristol City, along with an as-yet unnamed player.

But what can we expect? There’ll be a staple update on injuries, especially prevelant after the international break when several members of Wilder’s squad jetted around the world to represent their countries.

Wilder faces the unenviable prospect of not being able to begin finalising his starting eleven for this weekend's visit to Bristol until 24 hours before the game, and Enda Stevens and John Egan are set for late fitness assessments after their exploits with the Republic of Ireland against Wales and Poland.

Ben Woodburn will also be checked over after playing for Wales in Denmark, while Dean Henderson will report back for duty after England U21s’ European Championship qualifiers against Holland and Latvia. Both are expected to be available for selection at Ashton Gate, as are Northern Ireland's Oliver Norwood and Conor Washington.

Wilder is understandably proud of those players who represented their countries – and those of a red and white persuasion who were placed on standby, too – and sees it as a feather in the cap for the Blades. 

Chris Wilder of Sheffield United

Chris Wilder of Sheffield United

"It's good for them and the club in terms of prestige," he said. "They improve and so, without stating the obvious, we do as well."

Paul Coutts’ fitness will also no doubt surface, after the midfielder played 70 minutes for the U23s against Charlton Athletic on Tuesday.

The last meeting between these two sides at Ashton Gate was the last game of last season, when Wilder’s future at his boyhood club was less secure. One of United’s scorers that day, Leon Clarke, missed the game against Aston Villa before the break with a tight hamstring but is back in training. 

Don’t expect too many hints about the side that will face City – Wilder is far too streetwise for that – but there’s unlikely to be too many surprises.

Keep up to date with the press conference on www.thestar.co.uk/blades, where we’ll publish a rundown of Wilder’s key points this afternoon.