Sheffield United: Slavisa Jokanovic's honest admission about match-winner David McGoldrick

David McGoldrick’s exquisite second-half cameo performance, which helped change the course of Sheffield United’s game against Stoke City, came as no surprise to manager Slavisa Jokanovic who admitted to admiring the centre-forward’s talents long before he started work at Bramall Lane in July.

Sunday, 17th October 2021, 5:00 pm

United were trailing 1-0 when McGoldrick was introduced from the bench during the closing stages, with Jacob Brown firing the visitors in front soon after the interval.

Having provided the assist for fellow substitute Lys Mousset’s equaliser, McGoldrick then scored his first goal since the final weekend of last season’s Premier League campaign to hand United their most prized scalp of the campaign so far.

Speaking after the victory over opponents who had travelled to South Yorkshire fourth in the Championship table, Jokanovic, who took charge of United following their relegation from the top-flight, told The Star: “I have known him (McGoldrick) for a lot of years. I’ve admired him for a lot of years, even when I wasn’t here. Because of that, he has a big expectation but he can change (games). That’s why he has been a very important player here for a long time.”

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Jokanovic’s comments suggest that McGoldrick, now fully recovered from the injury he suffered earlier this year, could be set for a more prominent role when United host Millwall on Tuesday night.

Intriguingly, the Serb felt the former Republic of Ireland’s experience was more important against City than his “intelligence” - persuading him to “follow the plan” rather than panic when time appeared to be running out.

“He is intelligent, he has intelligence,” Jokanovic said. “That’s also why he can do this.”

Sheffield, England, 16th October 2021. David McGoldrick celebrates his goal: Simon Bellis / Sportimage
David McGoldrick with his Sheffield United team mate Jayden Bogle: Simon Bellis / Sportimage