SHEFFIELD United manager Danny Wilson has threatened to wield the axe following their Johnstone’s Paint Trophy defeat to Bradford.
The Blades chief questioned his players stomach for the battle after the penalty shoot-out loss.
Wilson was left fuming at their inability to build on Matt Phillips’ first-half opener, accusing United of being outfought by the League Two outfit. He kept the players locked in the dressing room for 40 minutes afterwards and demands an improved showing when they host Oxford in the first round of the FA Cup on Saturday. He said: “It can go one of two ways. The players either react to it (loss) or they don’t. The ball is in the court of certain people at the moment. I was happy with some individuals and unhappy with others. We’ve got another big game on Saturday. Oxford will be buoyant after our result but we’ve got to show mettle, resilience and professionalism to put a setback behind us and drive forward.”
Wilson added: “There were some good performances as the game went on but not enough. When we got our noses in front we didn’t force a second goal. I look around and I can see certain areas where I’m thinking back about now and it is just not good enough.
“It has to be better if we are going to achieve anything we expect to achieve then performances have to be stronger and more committed than that.”
With Billy Clarke and Matt Phillips returning to Blackpool, Wilson will have to make two changes against the Us. Ryan Flynn, Richard Cresswell and Stephen Quinn are pressing for recalls in midfield. Matt Lowton is likely to be reinstated at right-back after Elian Parrino’s shaky JPT display while Wilson may start Nick Montgomery at the expense of Kevin McDonald or Michael Doyle.
“We feel like we let ourselves down the other night,” said Doyle. “We are all disappointed and the manager had a go and rightly so. He told us in no uncertain terms what we have to do to put it right.”