The Blades drew 1-1 with Oldham Athletic on Boxing Day at Bramall Lane - putting in a poor first half performance, but the second 45 minutes saw an equalising goal from Jose Baxter and he almost won the game at the death in what was a high-octane final 15 minutes. With Tranmere beating Shrewsbury the Blades dropped to 20th in the league but their run was extended to seven league and cups games unbeaten and a win over the Rovers would take them further up the table.
However a section of the Blades support booed their team off the field, feeling that they should have aquired more goals, whilst some also suggested 'Clough Out' on BBC Radio Sheffield's post-match 'Football Heaven' phone in programme. Clough said: “The fans were entitled to vent their feelings at the break. But it seemed to spur the players on in the second half and the last 15 or 20 minutes after the break is how I want to attack teams at home. On any other day, we could have got the winner.”