Sheffield United: Secrets of Lane upturn

Right-back Tony McMahon says Sheffield United are trying to be more solid
Right-back Tony McMahon says Sheffield United are trying to be more solid
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Tony McMahon, the Sheffield United full-back, has revealed the secret behind their recent improved form.

United lock horns with Gillingham on Saturday bidding to secure their third win in four outings since Nigel Clough succeeded David Weir at the helm.

McMahon said: “We have gone back to basics under the new gaffer and we are trying to be more solid.

“He [Clough] has said we are going to play 4-4-2, be solid and put the ball in the opposition’s box as many times as we can and we are going to see if they can defend.”

United, who sit in 23rd position in the League One standings, secured their first away win of the season at Colchester United in the FA Cup last weekend. McMahon, a first-team regular, feels Clough has come in and simplified things.

“Under David Weir, we were spread and liked to pass the ball,” he acknowledged. “Since Nigel has come in, he has just stripped things back and made us solid and hard to beat. We have picked up a few results which has been good and we are enjoying it. The enjoyment comes with winning games.

“When you start winning, confidence starts to flow. We have played well and picked up a few results and confidence comes with results and performances.”

Chris Porter, the match-winner at Colchester, is expected to be declared fit to face Gillingham despite suffering a knee injury last weekend while Neill Collins may have to wear a protective headguard due to the head injury he sustained at Shrewsbury Town. Porter has yet to train this week but Clough is confident he will be fit.