13:00, Saturday 14th April, Brammall Lane
When was the last time that with only four games to go in a Championship season has there been only five points between 5th place and 11th? Is it destiny, or just a coincidence that Millwall’s last remaining fixture are against those directly around them and vying for the position that the Lions find themselves in? Either way, its an interesting time to be a Millwall fan.
Millwall travel up to Yorkshire for this early kick off, knowing that if they are victorious then the Blades are effectively out of the promotion push. This is a huge game for both teams and if this fixture was at the beginning of the season then you would probably be backing United, but as the Lions’ unbeaten run shows no sign of stopping, would you bet against us?
The recent head-to-head is in Millwall’s favour, with the Lions winning four of the last five games between the two, but the form guide is out the window for this clash.
LAST TIME OUT
SHEFFIELD UNITED 2-1 Middlesbrough: Two first half goals were enough to see the Blades victorious over Boro, keeping a faint hope of a play-off place alive. This result saw Tony Pulis’ side ultimately fall out of the top six to be replaced by Millwall, and although they came close in the second half to equalising, United managed to keep Middlesbrough at bay and secured the three points.
Bolton Wanderers 0-2 MILLWALL: The Lions started the game slow, but gradually got into the contest and were rewarded with a great diving header from Tom Elliott. The win was secured thanks to a second goal from the in-form Ben Marshall, but the plaudits for that finish went to Mahlon Romeo who went on another phenomenal run before crossing to find the Millwall winger in space in the penalty area.
Bolton Wanderers (3-5-2):
The Blades will stick with the same line up which beat Middlesbrough, although Jamal Blackman is available after a ban. Richard Stearman could be back in the squad after injury, but he should only make the bench.
Although Tom Elliott had a great game against Bolton Wanderers, his consistency will be an issue for Neil Harris and therefore we may see Steve Morison return to the starting line-up. The form the Lions are in means the team picks itself, but that is not a detriment to the bench that has players who are more than capable of slotting in if required.
KEY BATTLE: LEE EVANS (SHEFFIELD UNITED) VS. SHAUN WILLIAMS (MILLWALL)
Lee Evans was in fine form in the recent victory against Middlesbrough and Chris Wilder will be hoping for another big performance from his midfielder. Shaun Williams is one of the players that pulls Millwall’s strings and his passing range is deadly, so if Sheffield United are to get a positive result they will need to restrict the Irishman’s game and freedom.
Are the Lions underdogs?
Neil Harris has recently said that there is no pressure on his side, as no-one expected Millwall to be in this position, but now we are in the play-off places and are the ones being chased. The Lions were progressing nicely under the radar and being ignored, but now the attention is starting to be focussed on the South London side will it affect us?
Make or break for Blades?
As with their opposition, Sheffield United are desperate for the points and arguably need them more than Millwall. If they win, then Wilder’s face will be inserted in the Sky Sports New line-up, but if they are defeated then they will need a minor miracle to even be in the conversation for a play-off place. The Blades know this is a huge game, but will they buckle under the pressure?
PREDICTION: Sheffield United 0-1 MILLWALL
Some teams would be daunted by travelling to Bramall Lane and having to get a result, but Millwall’s form on the road shows they can rise to the occasion. This will be a great game up in Yorkshire, but I can just see the Lions nicking the win. Millwall know the importance of this game and have shown against other play-off rivals that they are more than capable of getting the three points. Come on you Lions.