Sheffield United: George Baldock revels in Jack Grealish battle and winding up Man City star

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Baldock reveals he loved battle with Grealish and hopes to make City test a regular occurance next season

Sheffield United star George Baldock admitted he “loved” his individual battle with England star Jack Grealish at Wembley on Saturday, despite the experience being soured by a 3-0 defeat to Premier League giants Manchester City in their FA Cup semi-final.

Baldock was handed one of the toughest tasks of the afternoon in shackling the £100m man but acquitted himself superbly for the most part before being replaced by Jayden Bogle later in the game.

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The performance will give Baldock renewed confidence that he can compete against sides like City ahead of United’s likely return to the Premier League, which will be confirmed if they can beat West Bromwich Albion on Wednesday evening at Bramall Lane.

“One of my good friends, Callum Robinson, is best friends with Jack,” Baldock said. “So we’ve had a couple of nights about before and I half know Jack.

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“Even though we’ve got off well off the pitch in the times we’ve spent together, he does seem to get wound up by me kicking at his ankles.

“I loved it. Every time he got the ball in my head I was thinking: ‘Come on, let’s have it.’ I felt pleased. But look, we lost the game 3-0.

“I was dreaming of the final. I knew it would be difficult but you almost get that false sense of security when you’ve done so well for 40-odd minutes.

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“I’m sure this isn’t going to be the only final Man City get to this season. I really believe they’ve got a real chance of doing all three. It’s disappointing but hopefully we can get the day job done, get promoted and look back on this with immense pride.

“We’ve got an opportunity now in the next four games to guarantee 38 games at that level next season.”

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