Sheffield United: The simple order Chris Wilder wants his forwards to follow against Manchester United
In a message which appears to confirm Sheffield United plan to attack their namesakes from Manchester during Sunday's match at Bramall Lane, Chris Wilder has told his centre-forwards to work efficiently rather than selflessly against the three-time European champions.
Although United's climb to fifth in the Premier League table has been built on a well-drilled defence - they have conceded fewer goals than all but one of their top-flight rivals so far this term - Wilder has dismissed suggestions his squad's first instinct is to stop opponents from scoring, not create opportunities themselves.
Speaking ahead of this weekend's fixture, he used the role David McGoldrick has performed in recent weeks to highlight the absurdity of claims United have taken a conscious decision to try and frustrate their way to success since being promoted earlier this year.
"I know people talk about defending from the front," Wilder said. "I don't want David McGoldrick heading balls out of our box. He might have to at times, if we find ourselves under pressure. But that's not how we go about things. We want the players to concentrate on doing the things they do best."
United entered the international break a point and two places above Ole Gunnar Solskjær's side after securing a draw at Tottenham Hotspur. McGoldrick found himself at the centre of controversy during that fixture, when he appeared to have a goal harshly disallowed for offside before George Baldock eventually cancelled-out Heung-Min Son's opener for the hosts.
Although McGoldrick's finishing has come under scrutiny in recent months, his return from injury has been cited a driving force behind a sequence of results which means they will stretch their unbeaten run to six matches if they avoid defeat against the visitors from Old Trafford.
Wilder, who signed McGoldrick when he was released by Ipswich Town 16 months ago, said: "He, McGoldrick, has been brilliant on and off the pitch. If he was more clinical then I don't think Sheffield United would have got anywhere near him, because of the ability he's got.
"I always think results will come if we are performing well and the performances when they're good, Didzy is at the heartbeat of those."