United chief only has eyes for opponents Bury

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AMID the hullabaloo, claim and counter-claim associated with transfer deadline day, it could be easy to forget there is a football match taking place at Bramall Lane tomorrow.

But while directors, media and supporters alike work themselves into a frenzy ruminating upon the implications of their respective clubs’ business, Sheffield United manager Danny Wilson last night insisted his focus has never wavered from attempting to beat Bury.

“It’s certainly not been a distraction for me,” he said. “And I would’ve thought exactly the same thing goes for the players.

“That’s got to be our main priority; the match.

“That’s the biggest thing we are working towards.”

Bury, managed by Wilson’s friend Ritchie Barker, have made a creditable start to the new season after gaining promotion from League One.

Sheffield Wednesday may have prised away Ryan Lowe, their most potent goalscorer, but the former Northern Ireland international is adamant the visitors still pose a threat to United’s five match unbeaten run.

“I think Ritchie is one of the up-and-coming names to watch and he’s got a good experienced assistant in Peter Shirtliff alongside him,” Wilson said.

“I know Ritchie well and I took him to Hartlepool with me when I was there.

“I always thought he was cut out for management because he’s got a very inquisitive mind.

“Ritchie was always asking questions and wanting to know the reasoning behind things and I’m sure he’ll do really well.”

Bury are expected to hand debuts to Shaun Harrad and Giles Coke after capturing them from Northampton and Wednesday respectively.

Like Coke, Leicester City youngster Shane Byrne has also arrived on loan.

United, who are third in the table, will be without midfielders Lee Williamson and Kevin McDonald despite Wilson’s confirmation that both have returned to training following injury.

“Kevin seems a ‘no’ and although Lee has done some work with the rest of the lads this morning I think it will be too early for him,” he said yesterday.