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Chris Basham makes admission after Sheffield United system change

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Sheffield United centre-back Chris Basham has admitted that reverting to a back three since the international break has made the side ‘more structured’, speaking to The Star about their system alteration.

With former manager Slavisa Jokanovic opting to play with a flat back four in a 4-2-3-1 formation for the majority of the 2021/22 campaign, the Blades struggled to perform consistently as they endured major teething troubles in adapting to a new style of play, having been accustomed to life under ex-boss Chris Wilder for numerous years at Bramall Lane.

The South Yorkshire outfit even went winless in their latter three matches before the previous international break, persuading the Serbian to switch after the interval and play with three at the heart of defence against Coventry City last weekend.

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Although they failed to show enough attacking urgency until the late stages of that tie at Bramall Lane, their 0-0 draw with Mark Robins’ men secured a much-needed clean sheet having gone without one in their six second-tier matches prior to that.

United were even able to build on that on Tuesday evening against Reading, remaining solid at the back when threatened and managing to grab a winner through Jayden Bogle just before the hour mark.

Key man Basham has praised their recent change in formation, going on to admit that his teammates now understand their roles better despite the centre-back enjoying life playing a back four.

Speaking to the Sheffield Star about this tactical tweak, he said: “We conceded goals, which has been the downfall of it (playing four at the back)

“So I think going back to a five has made us more structured.

“Everybody understands their positions and we’ve looked good. Hopefully we can carry that on.”

The Verdict:

Things seemed to be looking up after Tuesday, with Jokanovic making the necessary changes since their defeat against Blackburn earlier this month, keeping consecutive clean sheets and winning four points from a possible six.

Basham is one of those players after impressing in recent weeks alongside John Egan and now Ben Davies, with Wes Foderingham performing well in goal in the absence of Robin Olsen.

However, with Jokanovic now exiting the club, it remains to be seen what the next step is under Paul Heckingbottom.


A 21-year-old Reading FC fan and writer who graduated from the University for the Creative Arts in the summer with a degree in Journalism and Media Production. Other topics written about include politics, mental health and education.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Chris Basham makes admission after Sheffield United system change

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