Sheffield United manager Slavisa Jokanovic has revealed that Ben Osborn missed out on the draw with Preston North End through illness, and insisted Iliman Ndiaye should be fine after coming off.
The Blades were unable to make it back-to-back wins against Preston on Tuesday night despite them taking the lead on two occasions in the game.
It had looked like Sander Berge’s second half goal was going to get them the win before the Lilywhites found a stoppage equaliser after some poor defending by the Blades.
One notable absentee for Sheffield United on the night was Osborn. That was a major issue for Jokanovic’s side after the 27-year-old had delivered an influential performance against Peterborough United on Saturday with two goals in the 6-2 win.
While the Blades would have also have been concerned to see Ndiaye leave the field with what seemed like a potential knock with 19 minutes remaining.
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Speaking to Yorkshire Live after the draw with Preston, Jokanovic revealed that Osborn’s absence from the squad was down to an illness that he has been suffering from in the build-up to the game.
He said: “He is ill, he hasn’t been working last two days with us.”
While on Nidaye’s condition he suggested that it was not a major injury and instead just cramp, he added: “Cramp, nothing special.”
It is a major boost for Sheffield United that Ndiaye seems like he will be alright and should recover swiftly from suffering a little bit of cramp during the 2-2 draw with Preston.
Given this was just Ndiaye’s second start for Sheffield United in the league it is no surprise that the talented attacker might have overdone it a little bit and needed to come off for the final 20 minutes of the game.
Jokanovic will need to do all he can to monitor Ndiaye’s development and not ask too much of the attacker too soon.
If he can do that then the Blades should be able to see more performances from him like the one against Peterborough.
The Blades will be hoping that Osborn’s illness does not prove to be too problematic considering that he has been a key player for them so far this campaign. He really came to life with his performance against Peterborough and showed how crucial he can be for the Blades.
Having him back as soon as possible will be a huge boost for Sheffield United because they missed his energy and drive for large parts of the game against Preston.