Sheffield United are set to host Preston North End at Bramall Lane as the championship season approaches its ending phase.
Sheffield United have secured their promotion for next season and have their spirits high going into this game. They have been super solid throughout the season and Paul Heckingbottom's team have defied all expectations with their splendid display. In the last five games as well, they have only lost and it was against the table toppers Burnley. For them, it has been Oliver Norwood in midfield who has completed dictated games with his passes and workrate. He has played all games and been a rampant force. Norwood will be looking to continue his sublime form and end the season on a high before they step into the Premier League.
Preston North End has everything to play for coming into this game. They are at 10th place with 63 with only two points off from the playoff spot. They once were pretty comfortable in the playoff spot but their recent form slump has led to their downfall. Preston North End have only won two games in the last five games which is a big area of concern. They need to buckle up their seat belts if they want to boost their chances for the ultimate goal. For them to qualify it is again going to be Ben Whiteman to shine who has been a force for them in midfield.
If we take a look at the rivalry between these teams then Sheffield United is leading the charts. They have 9 games against them compared to Preston's 5 wins. With promotion already secured, they will look to play free football and give home fans a moment to cheer. However in the last five games, their three matches have ended in close 2-2 draws. This game can also be another nail biter.
If we look at the injury table for Sheffield United then it is not an encouraging sign for Paul Heckingbottom. They have five injuries in their camp. Likes of Rhian Brewster, Osborn and Davies are out due to hamstring injury. While their integral defender O'Connell is out due knee injury and is in danger to miss the whole season.
Story for Preston North End, however, is much less concerning. They have only four injuries in their camp. Cunningham, Evans, Jakobsen and Browne are out for this clash.
Expert Insight: Both teams are coming into this clash with contrasting form. Sheffield United have already sealed their berth for Premier League for next season and will look to stamp their authority against lower placed Preston. Preston may not be in the best of form but they have a bigger motive to play for. They are looking to make comeback in playoff spot and this game is going to be make or break match.