'We're hurting' admits Sheffield United star, as he backs his team mates to take out their frustrations on Tottenham Hotspur
Chris Basham admits Sheffield United’s players are “hurting” after a disappointing return to Premier League action, but is backing his team mates to take out their frustration on Tottenham Hotspur when Jose Mourinho’s side visit Bramall Lane.
Despite revealing United have been stung by criticism of both their performances and results since the season restarted last month, Basham insisted confidence within the squad remains high ahead of tomorrow meeting with the Londoners.
A victory over last term’s Champions League finalists would lift United above Mourinho’s men in the table and end a sequence of three straight defeats after they were beaten by Newcastle, Manchester United and Arsenal following a controversial draw at Aston Villa 15 days ago.
Although they produced a more competitive display during last weekend’s FA Cup quarter-final with Spurs’ arch-rivals - Dani Ceballos’ 91st minute winner coming against the run of play - Basham conceded United must quickly arrest their slide in form to prevent a campaign which has seen them surpass all expectations from petering out.
“We don’t want to go out hurting,” the defender said, “Not getting winning results, so we’ll take it from here. At the start, we wanted to stay up. Now we’re after more and we don’t want it to just crumble now.”
United were tipped for relegation after climbing out of the Championship last season, having only been promoted from League One two years earlier. But they had climbed to seventh and were only five points behind fourth-placed Chelsea when the fixture programme was suspended in March because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Although that gap has now doubled, Basham said: “Confidence is still good. Okay, we’ve been a bit deflated with results and the comments will always be there.
“The manager will be aiming to take the boost in morale we got from our last performance into this one. When we lose, we’ll obviously be hurting because we are used to winning so we want to get the ball rolling again.
“The boys will be looking forward to it (facing Spurs),” Basham added. “The games are coming thick and fast and so there’s no time to dwell.”