Sheffield United's defensive injury crisis worsens as Jack Robinson joins casualty list in Wolves defeat

Sheffield United’s defensive crisis worsened when Jack Robinson was withdrawn from their 3-0 FA Cup defeat at Wolves on Sunday with a back injury.

By Danny Hall
Wednesday, 12th January 2022, 12:09 pm

The former Liverpool man had endured a difficult first half against the pace of Adama Traore, making an error in the build-up to Wolves’ opener and almost conceding another with a sloppy pass in a dangerous area.

Robinson didn’t appear for the second half, as United went on to lose 3-0, and boss Paul Heckingbottom revealed afterwards that the defender was struggling with a back injury.

With defenders George Baldock, John Egan and Enda Stevens all noticeable absentees from the teamsheet against Bruno Lage’s men, and with Ben Davies missing again, Kyron Gordon made his FA Cup debut and the Blades finished with left-back Rhys Norrington-Davies at centre-half and Ben Osborn, who began the game in midfield, at left wing-back.

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“He’s got a back injury, so we’ll have to assess him,” Heckingbottom said of Robinson.

“You can see we’re really light for defenders so we’re hoping it’s nothing serious and that we can get some work into him and make sure he’s fit and available for the next game.

“If he’d have been fit he’d have been out for the second half. I didn’t want to make the change, it disrupted us , but when Rhys went across I thought he performed really well and those are the positives.

Jack Robinson of Sheffield United is distraught following the Wolves' first goal: Andrew Yates / Sportimage

“Some of the players responded well in adversity but that was the challenge. We knew we were depleted in certain areas and coming to a Premier League team having not played for a while. But we wanted to embrace it, and we did.”

John Fleck was one of 11 players unavailable at Molineux and Heckingbottom is keen to get him back as soon as possible as the Blades face a compacted fixture schedule in 2022.

“Flecky picked up an injury, so we need to look at him,” the United boss said.

“Otherwise it’d have been a great game for him to get minutes because he’s been training very well.

“It’s just niggled an injury he’s been carrying so we need to get him back as quickly as possible, because we need everyone involved for these upcoming games.”