David Weir, the Sheffield United manager, has leapt to the defence of his players ahead of this afternoon’s clash with Carlisle.
United travelled to Brunton Park yesterday placed 19th in the League One table and still smarting from last weekend’s defeat by neighbours Rotherham.
That result prompted widespread criticism of the visitors’ performance at New York Stadium and although Weir sympathised with some aspects - “We can’t keep making individual mistakes” - he insisted: “You’ve always got to take the positives. That’s my nature.
“That doesn’t mean you don’t acknowledge where you are going wrong. Far from it.
“But it’s important to focus on things that are going right too. And there are.
“I genuinely feel we are very close to getting things right. Of course, that just makes it even more frustrating to be fair.
“We’re not a million miles away from where we want to be but of course you are ultimately judged on results. So that’s what we’ve got to go out there and get.
“But I’ve seen enough to know that this team is capable of doing exactly that.”
Weir, who could recall Jamie Murphy, Sean McGinty and George Long against Graham Kavanagh’s side, pointed to the recent arrival of Jose Baxter and Florent Cuvelier as evidence United are on the right path.
Baxter scored his first goal for the South Yorkshire club against Steve Evans’ side and Weir said: “Jose is a good player. He can finish, makes things happen and always wants to be involved at the sharp end.
“The same goes for Florent. He’s a good player too.
“The fact that we’ve managed to bring in two people of their quality on permanent contracts can only be a plus for this football club. A real positive.”
“We’re constantly looking to reshuffle and put the best team on the pitch to win the game,” Weir added. “We’re a long way from the finished article but we’ve made good strides and we’re going in the right direction.
“I think we should have more points than what we’ve got given how we’ve played so far, but we are where we are.”