Preview: Swansea City vs. Sheffield United

Last updated : 05 May 2011 By @blades_mad1889

Sheffield United faced Barnsley last weekend in a tense South Yorkshire Derby; a united win at Bramall Lane and defeats for both Doncaster Rovers and Crystal Palace would result in a final day showdown in Wales.

It was the visitors who got the ball rolling, a slip by a Blades defender allowed Danny Hayes (15 minutes) to fire one-on-one past Steve Simonsen. United clawed their way back into the game and shortly before half-time Matt Lowton (39) headed home Lee Williamson’s free-kick.

The hosts were the dominate side early in the second half and got their just deserts; all be it from a keeper error. Williamson’s (59) long range striker was too powerful fort Luke Steele who spilled and the kop roared as the ball slowly trickled over the line.

United kept their lead until the final minutes when a late surge of attack resulted in a Barnsley goal; Haynes (84) unmarked has he headed home the leveller. In the end a win would have been all in vein as 1-1 draws for both Doncaster and Palace would have sent the Blades down regardless.

The Blades recorded a victory the last time these two sides met in December, when a Ched Evans strike was enough to seal a victory in caretaker manager John Carver’s first game in charge. Though United have yet to win in the Liberty Stadium and have to go all the way back to November 1958 when the S2 club beat Swansea Town 2-0 at the Vetch Field in their last victory in that part of Wales.

Blades boss Micky Adams will be without a number of players; Johannes Ertl (knee), Ryan France (back) and Andy Taylor (leg) are all missing through injury.

Has the game reached 90 minutes at the Lane last Saturday, striker Ched Evans was injured in  a terrible challenge – he was forced to be stretchered off and was later taken to hospital to assess his injury – he is very unlikely to feature this weekend.

With their fate already confirmed it may be a ‘Neil Warnock’ moment and allow some younger players the opportunity of first team football; goalkeeper George Long, defenders Phil Roe and Connor Brown as well as midfielder Jordan Chappell and forward Danny Philliskirk may get their chance at the Liberty Stadium.

Expected Eleven:  Simonsen, Lowton, Lowry, Collins, Mattock, Riise, Montgomery, Williamson, Quinn, Henderson, Slew.

Last Monday Norwich City beat Portsmouth to win promotion to the Premier League and end Swansea’s automatic dream despite giving them hope with a 2-0 win at Millwall a few days previous.; Darren Pratley (30) and Stephen Dobbie (47) scored in each half to claim that elusive victory in London.

City boss Brendan Rodgers is boosted by the return of on-loan Chelsea striker Fabio Borini (ankle) and Mark Gower (ankle) – Borini came on as a second half substitute at the Den whilst Gower was unused.

Meanwhile forward Tamas Priskin (ligament damage) has ended his loan early and returned to parent club Ipswich Town to seek medical treatment.

They could wheel out former Blades Craig Beattie, Leon Britton and Nathan Dyer to face their former club. However winger David Cotterill is on loan at Portsmouth until the remainder of the season.

Beattie spent time at the Lane on loan during the 2008-09 campaign; he arrived from West Bromwich Albion in February 2009 until the end of the season; making his debut at Plymouth (2-2). He scored his only goal for the club in a 4-2 win over Derby and featured in both the semi-finals and the Play-Off Final against Burnley (0-1).craig beattie

He mostly featured as a squad player whilst on loan and made a total of 5 (+13) appearances for the Blades as well as scoring that solitary goal under Kevin Blackwell.

Dyer came to Bramall Lane on loan from Southampton in September 2008 in a loan swap deal involving Jordan Robertson.; staying until late December. He made his debut at home to Watford (2-1) and scored in a 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace. He made a total of just 3 (+4) appearances for United and scored just the one goal before returning to the Saints.

Britton was signed by Kevin Blackwell on a free transfer from Swansea City in July 2010 and made his united debut at Cardiff City (1-1) on the opening day of the season. He made 24 (+2) appearances for the club without scoring a goal; he returned to Swansea on a free transfer in January 2011.

Expected Eleven: de Vries, Williams, Taylor, Rangel, Tate, Allen, Pratley, Britton, Dyer, Moore, Dobie.