Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom has opened up on an ominous injury crisis at Bramall Lane ahead of Manchester United’s visit to Yorkshire.
As one of only two winless Premier League teams in 2023/24, the Blades return to action on Saturday seeking much-needed improvement after the international break.
However, injuries to numerous first-team stars don’t play into Heckingbottom’s hands, causing the under-pressure manager a selection headache ahead of another mammoth task.
In addition to long-term absentees Daniel Jebbison, Rhys Norrington-Davies, Max Lowe, Ben Osborn and George Baldock, United have recently lost captain John Egan and reliable defender Chris Basham to injuries.
Speaking to the press in the build-up to Saturday’s clash, Heckingbottom confirmed Basham is still in the hospital recovering from several surgeries after breaking his leg against Fulham.
“Bash, first and foremost, is still in hospital – he’s going crazy inside those four walls and had a couple of operations, hopefully getting home to his family in the next few days,” the Blades boss said, as quoted by the YorkshireLive.
Egan, who twisted his ankle during United’s 2-0 loss at West Ham United, is also out of contention. After picking up an injury in training, Davies is in the same boat.
“It was a shocking week in terms of injuries other two have had operations, as well, and will be out for a long time,” Heckingbottom added.
“John’s was in the game jumping for a header, and Tom’s was with the last kick of the ball in training having a shot, and he caught the floor.”
On a more positive note, United could soon welcome Baldock and Osborn back to the fold, with both players on the verge of recovery after missing all eight Premier League games this term.
“George is getting closer,” the Blades manager said. “Ossie has been back in doing a few days with us. One or two coming back, which is good.
“We are low on numbers, so even if there is a chance for the bench for the last 15 minutes and it is not going to harm them, we will be using them.”
- Overrated & Underrated in 2023 – Aston Villa, Arsenal, Liverpool and more
- Bundesliga Weekly: All the action as Frankfurt humiliate Bayern, Leverkusen & Stuttgart draw
- Zlatan Ibrahimovic returns to AC Milan as advisor & RedBird partner
- Arsenal in 2023: Best Player, Best XI, Best Goal & More
- Liverpool keen to sign Maximilian Beier, £25m summer transfer likely
- Girona smash Barcelona to top La Liga: Can they win the league?
- The six best Premier League signings of the season so far
- Manchester City back on track after 2-1 victory over Luton Town
- Aston Villa 1-0 Arsenal: Bailey goal extends Villains’ unbeaten home run
- Pep Guardiola denies City are reliant on Rodri but the stats disagree