Sheffield United 2 - West Bromwich Albion 1

Date: Tuesday 2nd February 2021 Live on BT SportBehind Closed Doors
Competition: Premier League
Sheff U:
5.7
Ramsdale, Baldock (Lowe, 44), Basham, Egan, Ampadu, Bogle, Lundstram, Norwood (McBurnie, 45), Fleck, McGoldrick, Sharp (Burke, 86)
Unused subs: Foderingham, Jagielka, Brewster, Bryan, Brunt, Ndiaye
WBA:
3.4
Johnstone 5.1, O'Shea 3.5, Ajayi 4.5, Bartley 4.9, Townsend 4.7, Phillips 4.4 (Gallagher, 74 4.6), Livermore 3.2, Snodgrass 3.6, Pereira 4.4, Robinson 5.2 (Grant, 68 2.7), Diagne 4.1 (Robson-Kanu, 68 3.3)
Unused subs: Button, Furlong, Gibbs, Sawyers, Ivanovic, Peltier
Manager: Sam Allardyce 2.4
Scorers: Bogle (56), Sharp (73); Phillips (41)
Referee: Paul Tierney (Lancashire) 5.5
Attendance: 0
Submit your ratings for this game by clicking here: Ratings submitted so far: 19

Brendan Clegg:

Well I just found that really sad. I knew it was already over and that the late window signings pointless but it still hurts losing games and knowing what a long hard road lies ahead. Allardyce needs to commit to next season now or go - I’m still willing to give him a chance based upon his record. It won’t be pretty but I’d accept that for another promotion and hopefully finally getting rid of this wretched owner.

When I saw the team I thought it was probably as good as we could muster aside from Grosicki who has vanished despite decent contributions against Wolves and West Ham but hasn’t been shipped out. I also thought the system was best for us.

First half I was relatively pleased; strong start, solid overall, creating chances and restricting Sheffield to not much. When we nicked the opener after good play by Snodgrass and Robbo I thought we might be okay.

But 2nd half you have to say they deserved to win it. I thought the players grafted and did everything they were asked to do but the total surrender of possession and dropping deep asked for trouble. The signs were there before they equalised - Snodgrass couldn’t get going and we couldn’t get Pereira into it at all.

The big hoofs to the isolated Diagne against 3 centre backs made no sense but rather that getting it wide and doubling up (the way to play against wingbacks) we just kept giving them the ball - save for one move between Phillips and O Shea that should’ve shown the way having led to a point blank chance that would’ve been ruled out by VAR.

With hindsight Gallagher should’ve come on earlier for Snodgrass and maybe Pereira should’ve made way too but in the end we succumbed twice to the sheer volume of balls in and around our box and Utd’s admirable effort to keep the ball, carry it and just gamble committing runners rather than accept defeat or settle for a point.

As time ebbed away we failed to make the most of opportunities and that was that.

A glance at social networks saw players getting the blame again but I think that allows our coaches to get off too lightly. There has been no bounce or improvement and they haven’t made the most of resources available. It’s going to be a painful few months.

  • SJ - 6 No chance with goals but punched a few he could’ve caught I thought.
  • O’Shea - 5 Has a lot of character but is young and needs a break now. Struggling with the intensity.
  • Ajayi - 6 We can nitpick the goals but got a lot right. Probability beat him in the end.
  • Bartley - 6 Same as Semi. Cleared loads.
  • Townsend - 6 Also did ok. A couple of rusty moments when attacking.
  • Livermore - 5 Again he battled and broke things up but tired as it went on.
  • Snodgrass - 5 Touch of quality first half made the goal but was totally immobile after HT.
  • Phillips - 6 Did lots defensively and created chances as well as scoring.
  • Pereira - 5 Couldn’t get into it or get the pass off when needed apart from a brilliant cross at the end we fluffed.
  • Robinson - 6 Always bright especially drifting into gaps first half. Felt we missed him when he went off.
  • Diagne - 5 Given a tough game and definitely tired, but still put himself about and showed decent touches.
  • HRK - 4 Couldn’t get hold of it.
  • Grant - 4 Just can’t get going or look a threat.
  • Gallagher - 6 His running centrally made a difference but it was too late.