Nigel Clough will have no qualms about extending Ryan Flynn’s run at right back if Craig Alcock is again ruled out of Sheffield United’s side for their FA Cup tie at home to Plymouth this weekend.
Alcock, United’s first choice right back, was again missing from the teamsheet for Tuesday night’s game against MK Dons, having missed out last Friday against Notts County because of a back complaint.
Chris Basham was initially deployed at right back against Shaun Derry’s County, before switching with Flynn and the Scot kept his place in defence against Dons, and was faultless in a 1-0 defeat.
Alcock may recover in time to face John Sheridan’s Argyle but Clough said: “Ryan did well. Him and Jam [Jamal Campbell-Ryce] linked up well down the right hand side.
“He’s a little more composed on the ball than Chris, and we needed Chris’s energy in midfield so we switched them and Flynny is more than capable of filling in at right back when we need him to.”
Basham, too, is set for another change of role this weekend with Paddy McCarthy, United’s on-loan centre-half, ineligible to feature in the FA Cup under Clough’s agreement with Neil Warnock, his opposite number at Crystal Palace.
Basham limped off in the dying moments against MK Dons with a tight hamstring.
Clough hopes striker Chris O’Grady recovers from a calf injury in time for next Saturday’s trip to Fleetwood. O’Grady, on loan from Brighton and Hove Albion, was also ineligible to face Argyle.
United’s U18s, meanwhile, slipped to a 3-2 defeat away at Crewe, despite fighting back to level after going 2-0 down.
United skipper Dominic Calvert-Lewin led the way with a brace.
United revealed yesterday that a nine-year-old boy with a respiratory condition will fulfil a lifelong dream by leading them out against Plymouth. Addison Connor, who was born with a diaphragmatic hernia which stopped one of his lungs from developing properly, will be United’s mascot for the FA Cup tie.