Sheffield United: Stuart McCall's message to Bramall Lane's first team squad

After helping to mastermind their downfall only one month ago, Stuart McCall is convinced Sheffield United possess a group of players who should be challenging for promotion.

Tuesday, 30th November 2021, 5:35 pm

The former Scotland and Rangers midfielder was a member of Blackpool’s backroom staff when Neil Critchley’s side triumphed 1-0 at Bramall Lane earlier this season.

Having returned to Bramall Lane following Paul Heckingbottom’s cornonation as manager last week, McCall, who has previously represented the club as both a coach and a player, said: “We’ve told the players they should have amassed more points, definitely. We’ve made that clear. Do I think the group here is good enough to have a push? Yes, without a doubt.”

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Paul Heckingbottom and Stuart McCall direct the players during the Sky Bet Championship match at Bramall Lane against Bristol City: Simon Bellis / Sportimage

“When I came here with Blackpool, United basically spent 70 minutes playing us off the park,” continued McCall, reflecting on one of their final outings under Heckingbottom’s predecessor Slavisa Jokanovic. “Then after going behind late on, they didn’t cause as much trouble as they should have but I suppose that’s confidence.

“These lads are going to be under no illusions about what we will expect. But we will also be looking to encourage them and remind them they’re really good players.”

Speaking at United training complex earlier today, McCall also had a message for supporters at Bloomfield Road who were disappointed by his decision to leave having only been appointed to Critchley’s team in July.

“People know I’m loyal and it all happened so quickly, I’ve not had chance to explain,” he said. “I know the club here well, obviously. I know Hecky really well and it’s closer to home. Really, it was the football club and the chance to come back here.”