Sheffield United reveal if Billy Sharp or Sander Berge will be their first choice penalty taker against Manchester City

Chris Wilder has suggested that Sander Berge is not Sheffield United’s first choice penalty taker, despite explaining why coaching staff instructed him to take the spot-kick they were awarded against Liverpool last weekend.

Friday, 30th October 2020, 5:11 pm

Speaking ahead of tomorrow’s game against Manchester City, United’s first outing since giving the reigning Premier League champions a huge scare at Anfield, Wilder insisted Berge’s attributes made him the ideal candidate to go head to head with Alisson Becker six days ago.

Although Berge fired the visitors in front, before goals from Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota saw Jurgen Klopp’s men take all three points, Wilder indicated the Norwegian international will not be asked the shoulder the responsibility again if captain and centre-forward Billy Sharp is on the pitch.

“When you look at Sander’s technique, the way he passes the ball, well, without simplifying it, from a technical point of view he’s outstanding,” Wilder told The Star. “He’s got a very strong side foot and with his temperament as well, he’s very cool, calm and doesn’t get flustered. You notice these things not only in games but also on the training ground.”

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“Sander scored a penalty in a shoot out at Burnley earlier this season,” Wilder added. “And he took that one really well. Billy is the obvious taker but, when he’s not on the pitch, I think Sander is the obvious choice.”

Sharp was on target from the spot when United secured their only point of the season so far following a 1-1 draw with Fulham earlier this month. But the striker could start the meeting with City on the bench following Rhian Brewster’s arrival from Liverpool.

Sheffield United's captain Billy Sharp (L) with Rhian Brewster (C) and fellow striker Oliver Burke: Andrew Yates/Sportimage