Manager Graham Alexander says his squad are relishing the test which awaits them when they travel to Bramall Lane to face Sheffield United this weekend.United go into the game with the Blades knowing a place in the play-offs is still a real possibility, with sixth placed Barnsley visiting league leaders Wigan Athletic.
However, Alexander believes it’s vital his side focus on the task of winning at the weekend.
Alexander told The Iron PlayerHD: “The players are excited about it.
“As a young player you always want to play in the biggest games possible, and they don’t come much bigger than Sunday for us at this present moment.
“We have to concentrate on our gameplan and what we need to do. If we do that, we’ll give ourselves the best chance.
“If we divert any focus from the job at hand, we’re going to let ourselves down. We’ve had a normal week, and we’re looking for a normal reaction from the players.
“We’re taking the individuals out, both manager and players, and focusing on what will be a strong team to play against. However, if we get our performance right, we know we’re a very good team as well.”
Alexander feels every game is important, but stated the clash with Nigel Adkins’ men takes on extra significance, given the position which the visitors find themselves in.
“There’s no such thing as a non-important game in professional football. You’re always representing yourself, the club and there’s always something to play for,” he said.
‘Obviously the impact of certain games are bigger than others, and Sheffield United, Bramall Lane, it’s a huge game at this level anyway.
“However, when it’s the last game of the season, and there’s a lot riding on it, it’s cranked up a notch. In saying that, it gets the blood pumping, and that’s what we’re in this game for.”
With regards to the selection Alexander will have to choose from on Sunday, he revealed midfielder Neal Bishop is getting close to a return to full fitness, but insisted he won’t be rushed back into first team action.
“We’re going to look at him tomorrow and see if he could be available. We’re just undecided whether or not that’s a possibility, so we’ll give him the longest possible time to throw his hat into the ring,” he stated.
“If not we’ve got players who can play in the team, and win games. We’ve proved that over the last few weeks.
“There have been various players missing, such as Jamie Ness and Stephen Dawson, but we’ve continued to win.”
See much more from Graham Alexander, Stephen Dawson and David Mirfin on The Iron PlayerHD.
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