Last week saw the South versus West Yorkshire Derby at Elland Road contested between Leeds United and Sheffield Wednesday (the game ended 1-1), now it is the turn for the Blades to face the Bantams in their own League One equivalent and despite being at a lower level it will be just as eagerly contested.
United lay thirteenth in the table following a start to the season which has seen them pick up just four points to date from three matches played. They made a great start to the campaign, beating Nott’s County 2-1 at home in front on the TV camera’s but was defeated the following week at Brentford (1-3). Last Saturday the Blades drew 1-1 at home to Colchester United, former West Ham striker Freddy Sears fired home (30 minutes) after breaking away from a corner and on the stroke of half-time defender Harry Maguire unleashed a powerful shot which was spilled by the keeper and rolled into the net.
Blades boss David Weir is likely to name a similar eleven to that which drew with the U’s six days ago with no known injuries added to the list.
Bradford City made a satisfactory start to the season and go into this Yorkshire Derby clash (West meets South) and lay level on points (four) with Sheffield United amongst the mid-table positions. They drew 2-2 on the opening day at Bristol City before claiming a 4-0 home win over Carlsile United. In their last match, last weekend they were defeated 2-1 at Port Vale.
Bantams boss Phil Parkinson is expected to be without Carl McHugh (ribs) and James Hanson (broken hand) through injury and Louis Swain, 18 who has joined non-leaguers Bradford Park Avenue on a month’s loan.
The Blades will be keen to keep out Nahki Wells who is set to write himself into the history books at Valley Parade should he score against David Weir’s side. He has netted in his last seven consecutive and a further goal would level the records achieved previous by two former players; John McCole (1959) and David Layne (1962).
The Bantams are likely to field four former Blades to face their former club; Andrew Davies, Kyel Reid, Mark Yeates, Andy Gray could all feature.
Davies served United whilst on loan from Stoke City in September 2009 and remained at Bramall Lane until late December that year. He made his debut in the much memorable 3-2 victory over rivals Sheffield Wednesday and made his last appearance in a Blades shirt at Bristol City when Darius Henderson notched a hat-trick. He returned to the Britannia Stadium having made 7 (+1) appearances for United.
Reid was signed on a free transfer in July 2009 after being released by West Ham United but having spent a year with United failed to make an impact and after a loan spell was signed perminantly by Charlton Athletic in July 2010. He made his debut in the League Cup, a 2-1 home defeat to Port Vale and in all made 1 (+7) appearances for the Wizards.
Yeates was signed from Middlesbrough in January 2010 and was part of the side which was subsequently relegated into League One. He made his debut in a 3-0 victory over Reading and scored his first goal at Preston. In July 2011 he completed a move to Watford after making 30 (+26) appearances for the club and scored 7 goals.
Gray scored on his Blades debut on 28 February 2004 in a 2-1 defeat at Reading having completed a move from Bradford City (along with Simon Francis) a day previous. The following season he netted 18 goals in all competitions which sparked a move to Premiership Sunderland, a move which he made in August 2005. He left S2 having made 63 (+2) appearances and scored 28 goals.
Blades-Mad Prediction: Bradford City 0-0 Sheffield United