Sheffield United midfielder Sander Berge has insisted that the Blades can still be right up amongst the promotion contenders this season despite their difficult start to the campaign.
Slavisa Jokanovic’s side endured a very challenging first month of the season with them failing to win any of their first five Championship matches. That left them already with a lot of ground to make up in the promotion race.
However, it has been a much more positive for Sheffield United since their return from the international break. They have picked up four points from their two home games against Peterborough United and Preston.
The Blades should probably have made it back-to-back wins against Preston after Berge came off the bench and put them in front for the second time with just six minutes remaining. They were denied a second successive win though in the dying moments by Emil Riis Jakobsen’s 95th minute effort.
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Speaking to Sheffield United’s official club website, Berge was asked how confident he was about the Blades’ chances of clawing back the ground on the teams above them and getting up amongst the promotion contenders.
Berge insisted that he believes the Blades will improve enough to get themselves up towards the top of the table.
He said: “Oh yeah no doubt, I mean we started out not great at all and learned from that and I think these two games show signs of what’s to come and we just need to build and learn from this.
“We’re setting up a little bit different (with the) formation and we had some injuries and then some new player coming in, but each game we play we get more relations and people understand more situations that come up, so I know we’ll improve.”
These comments reflect well what has been happening with Sheffield United at the start of the season. While they also demonstrate that the players within the dressing room are aware that improvements are needed and that they have been working hard to ensure that they take place.
Berge has endured a difficult start to the campaign as well but he managed to get off the mark for the campaign against Preston and that should give him the confidence to go on and show more consistency.
The midfielder is one of the most naturally gifted players in the Championship this season and there was interest in him from clubs like Arsenal in the summer. So, Sheffield United know that if they can extract the best form from him this term they will have a major weapon on their hands.
The Norway international should benefit eventually from Jokanovic’s more possession-based style and it could enable him to see more of the ball and affect matches with his quality in the last third.
It has been a slow start, but if the Blades can find a way to start picking up consistent wins in the next few weeks then there is no reason why they can not put themselves up amongst the top six or seven sides.