Sheffield United’s Ertl relishes Palace return

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SHEFFIELD United utility man Johannes Ertl believes it is just a matter of time until results start to go their way in the club’s quest to stay up, writes Nick Gentry.

United are embroiled in a relegation fight at the foot of the Championship and are yet to win under new boss Micky Adams.

Ertl, however, believes the squad possesses the necessary qualities to beat the drop.

He said: “The most important thing is the belief we have in our side. We have some really good players with great ability and the managers doing a great job.

“Everyone knows the situation we’re in because loads of the players have been involved in relegation or promotion battles.

“So we have a very experienced squad when it comes to the big games.

“The most important thing for us is to stick together because our team spirit is really good.”

The 28-year-old has now played under four managers since he arrived at Bramall Lane six months ago but believes Adams is the man to steer The Blades away from trouble.

He explains: “It wasn’t an easy time to take over Sheffield United but we have changed the formation a bit and we are doing some different things on the training pitch.

“It is only a matter of time before we get a really, really good result under our belts.”

And Blades fans will hope it happens tomorrow when they take on fellow Championship strugglers Crystal Palace in what will be a huge game for the club.

But for Ertl, the game takes on a different dimension.

The Austrian spent two-years in South London that culminated in helping Palace survive on the final day of last season- condemning Wednesday to League One in the process.

He admits: “It’s a big, big game coming up on Saturday.

“I’m looking forward to the game because it’s really great, the respect I received from the Palace fans and because I trained in British football at Selhurst Park.

“I worked under Dougie Freedman and I am still in contact with some of the players.

“The club seems to be going in the right direction now and I quite like that because whenever I have been to a club where I have good memories it is good to see them doing well.”

But Ertl will be putting his feelings of fondness to one side on Saturday as he focuses on improving his new clubs survival chances at the expense of Palace.

“The most important thing is that we concentrate on our own game and the style we are playing,” he said. “The gaffer always prepares us well before the game so I hope we can get a good result on Saturday.

“There are 15 games left and we’ve got to get out of it.”