Sheffield United further their chances of promotion with an important win over relegation-bound Swindon Town at the County Ground.
The Blades were able to take the lead in the 29th minute. When, Caolan Lavery capitalised on a mishap in the Swindon defence, enabling him to slot the ball past Will Henry’s goal.
Six minutes later, Chris Wilder’s men extended their lead. Wing back Kieron Freeman found himself on the end of a Lavery cross, and from close range scored his ninth goal of the season.
Swindon midfielder Charlie Colkett reduced the deficit within the opening minute of the second half, with a rifling long-range effort.
United were then stunned seven minutes later, as Town’s Ben Gladwin powered home an equaliser from the edge of the penalty box.
A moment to forgot from Robins goalkeeper Henry, saw United regain their squandered two-goal lead. The ball was played back to Henry, who somehow passed the ball straight to United’s Jay O’Shea who easily opened his account for the Blades.
Paul Coutts sealed the game in the 92nd minute from the penalty spot, following a foul by Colkett on Samir Carruthers.
After the match, Wilder admitted his team’s performance was not the strongest of the campaign, but they showed a desire to win, which puts them in a good place for promotion.
He further stated: “We made it hard for ourselves out there at times. We probably should have put the match to bed much earlier than we did. But, judging by the reaction of the fans who came down to support us, I don’t think they are too bothered about the details. We can look at those, myself, and the staff. Basically, it’s all about taking the points.”
During pre-season, if Blades supporters were to be asked which players do you think will make the biggest impact this season, it would have been rare for anyone to say Kieron Freeman. Being out of favour to competitor John Brayford, who was sent out on loan to Burton Albion in the early stages of this campaign. Freeman was rumoured to be heading away from Bramall Lane.
However, due to his determination to not only defend the ball, but to get into space and create many chances in the attacking third. With a total nine goals and four assists, Freeman has grown to become an integral part of Wilder’s set up.
When asked about Freeman, Assistant manager Alan Knill added how the fullback has built on his game and become a clinical finisher, as well as reinforcing how valuable he is to the squad.