Sheffield United faced a setback on Boxing Day afternoon, marking a significant blow to their survival hopes in the Premier League this season. Despite holding a 2-1 lead at home against Luton Town, the team experienced a sudden downturn, ultimately losing 3-2. The Hatters, who didn’t have a shot after the 67th minute, managed to capitalise on two own goals within a four-minute span.
Chris Wilder dismissed any talk of “bad luck” in his post-game reaction, and firmly asserted that Sheffield United were responsible for their own downfall. All three goals conceded to Luton were deemed avoidable, with Wes Foderingham allowing Alfie Doughty’s shot to slip through his legs and own goals from Jack Robinson and substitute Anis Slimane. The team finds itself accountable for lapses in defensive play, notably when Doughty easily maneuvered past Gus Hamer in the first half.
After the match, a disappointed Oli McBurnie reflected on the Blades’ capitulation: “We weren’t at our best in the first half and the gaffer changed things at half time. We came came out in the second half and we had the game where we wanted it. So frustrating.
“At 2-1 up the momentum’s all on our side and we conceded two sloppy goals. Obviously own goals happen but it’s the build up before the goals which we’re not happy about in there. It’s about organisation and concentration and yeah, it’s tough one to take. We had them where we wanted them.” [SUTV]
This unfortunate afternoon not only dealt a blow to Sheffield United’s confidence but also undermined the brief boost they received at Aston Villa prior to Christmas.
Throughout the season, their confidence and belief have been running on fumes, making it imperative for the team to address and rectify these recurring issues. Sheffield United now find themselves seven points from safety.