Sheffield United vs. Fulham

 

The Blades were victorious at the Pirelli Stadium, winning 3-1, but despite claiming all three points which cannoned United to the top of the league - it left a severely bitter feeling having lost vice-captain Paul Coutts to injury. Billy Sharp was twice on target, once from the spot for the Blades first penalty of the campaign. Leon Clarke (pictured), who has been masterful in recent weeks, sounded off a win with United's third goal.

Wolves victory at Reading on Saturday saw the Molineux side leapfrog the Blades back into pole position by a fine two point margin, but with the Midlands side not in action until Wednesday night at home to Leeds, it gives the Blades a good opportunity to get back on top - latterly!

It was vital that United got back to winning ways following the International break which can sometimes put players out of rhythm. But Coutts 50/50 challenge with Marvin Sordell late in the first half saw the midfielder come out worse. He fractured his tibia in the resulting challenge and whilst he will not require surgery - will be sidelined for the remainder of the season.

United have a good record at home to Fulham. Although the two sides haven't met in the league since their Premier League encounter during 2006-07 which United won 2-0. In fact, the Cottages haven't won at the Lane since April 1985. If United are to continue their fine run and re-claim top spot again they will have to do so without an injury list which also includes George Baldock (hamstring) and striker Ched Evans (ankle).

John Lundstram is the likely man to take up the charge in place of Coutts, and following his return from injury, defender Richard Stearman may face his former club.

Fulham, who started the season off well as found themselves slumped to 17th in the table. They recorded a 1-1 draw in their last outing at home to Derby County in Saturday's late kick-off. They were without former Sheffield United and Wolves midfielder Kevin McDonald through suspension, after he picked up five yellow cards for the season. He will be made available again for selection after missing just one match.

Meanwhile forward Neeskens Kebano (hip) will be assessed and Sheyi Ojo (dislocated shoulder) is close to returning from injury. Forward Lucas Piazon (on loan from Chelsea) remains sidelined while he recovers from a broken leg.