JOHNNY Ertl last night revealed that Sheffield United have prepared for today’s FA Cup tie against non-league Salisbury City with the same focus as if they had drawn Arsenal or Chelsea.
And the Austrian defender, who revealed his “love” for the tournament on the eve of this afternoon’s third round contest, warned that a poor result could have an adverse effect upon Bramall Lane’s bid to host Championship football next season.
Ertl said: “For Salisbury, this is like the final so we have to approach it in exactly the same way.
“If your attitude is not right then, especially in these games, you have problems.
“Doing your best in this type of match says a lot about your character.
“And, to achieve anything you need character.”
United manager Danny Wilson has combined ensuring his players are ready to face Darrell Clarke’s side with attempting to steer safe passage through the transfer window.
With United, who return to League One action when Yeovil Town visit South Yorkshire on Tuesday, now third in the table, Wilson acknowledged earlier this week that several members of his squad are bound to have admirers elsewhere.
One of those - Ched Evans - has won praise from teammates and coaching staff alike for refusing to allow a well-documented personal issue to overshadow his professional life.
Evans has entered the final six months of his contract, United might ordinarily be tempted to cash in on the Wales international’s talents providing a suitable replacement could be found.
But Wilson, who hopes to capture Glasgow Rangers duo John Fleck and Kyle Hutton as well as Blackpool’s Billy Clarke, said: “The fact that Ched’s deal will be up doesn’t really alter the picture. What might alter it is the fact that we are where we are and that’s he’s enjoying his football.
“Of course there will be interest but we have to make sure it’s not detrimental to us.
“In any case, Ched might not want to go because, like I say, he’s happy here.
“If he told me that then it would be music to my ears.”
Echoing Ertl’s sentiments, Wilson added: “If you are conceited or complacent then problems quickly arise.”