Arguably, the Blades have been criticised as a 'one-dimensional' side, but Kevin Blackwell, who was heavily lamented for 'not having a plan B' as such last season, has committed to differentiate with his approach to games in terms of the style United choose to play. United are renowned as a physical side, but the addition of Leon Britton signals the gaffer's intentions to mix the Blades' current prowess with other, more flamboyant styles.
He looks ahead to the fixture with play-off rivals Cardiff City and is wary of the Bluebirds' strong points, but knows that the Welsh outfit will be fearing the Blades too. He said:
"I expect City to be up there, as they were last season in reaching the final, and although they have had their troubles they have managed to keep most of their better players which is absolutely key.
"If you can put names like Bothroyd, Chopra and Whittingham on your teamsheet you have a side to be reckoned with and every team Dave Jones puts out is competitive.
"In the Championship you have to able to mix things up to suit various game and different opposition and City can do that - they have power and pace, passing ability and can play short or long, all the ingredients really.
"Dave Jones has had a tough time recently with what has been going on behind the scenes down there and I sympathise with him as I have been there, done that.
"But he is a very good manager, a wily old fox and I respect the fact that any team he fields will be hard for us to beat." The boss turns his attentions to his side's problems and positives:
"We will travel without a full complement of fit players but we have quality and similar attributes to City and I believe that no team fancies they will have an easy task against us.
"I looked at our squad at the end of the season and tried to work out what we needed. We have brought in lads who can improve us with, for example, the power of Ertl and the passing ability of Britton so that we can mix things up as well.
"We already have lads who can battle like 'Morgs', 'Monty' and Cresswell and we have looked bright and sharp in training this week. They are really excited about the new season and are ready to go.
"It is always a tough task playing at Cardiff and it is a game in which one goal might just do it.
"We are away again for the first match - again - but the fact that it is on Sky as we were when we started last season suggests that the TV producers reckon we are in with a shout which is a credit to the lads."
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