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Blades boss praises subs as table-toppers win at Swansea

13 Sep 2022 3 minute read
Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom celebrates with goalscorer Reda Khadra after the win at Swansea. Photo David Davies. PA Images

Sheffield United boss Paul Heckingbottom praised substitutes Rhian Brewster and Reda Khadra after their late impact produced a 1-0 victory at Swansea.

Brewster and Khadra combined in the fourth minute of stoppage time to extend the Blades’ lead at the top of the Sky Bet Championship to four points.

Former Swansea loanee Brewster set up Khadra and the on-loan German kept his composure to score his first Sheffield United goal.

“You’ve got to make the most of them when you win a game like that, we’re going to enjoy it,” said Heckingbottom, who had sent the pair on in the final quarter for Oli McBurnie and Iliman Ndiaye.

“I’m pleased for Reda and Rhian, they’ve done all the work and know their roles when they are coming on for Oli and Iliman.

“Sometimes it (substitutions) works out great for you.

“It worked out great with Rhian against the middle centre-back Kyle (Naughton), and Reda breaking off the deepest midfielder because you’re not going to catch him.

“Rhian played a few games early on in the season. Reda has played one and had an impact in others, he’s catching up and adjusting to how we want to play.”


Sheffield United have now taken 16 points from their last six games, despite contending with a lengthy injury list that includes the likes of Max Lowe, Billy Sharp, Ciaran Clark, Enda Stevens, John Fleck and Jayden Bogle.

Heckingbottom said: “At the minute our options are limited from the bench.

“We’ve got a young bench, but we’ll keep pushing and waiting for that cavalry to arrive.

“We’ve got to have that consistency because, the moment we don’t, we’ll get beat.”

Swansea have now conceded five times in the 90th minute and beyond this season, and boss Russell Martin was unhappy the Blades’ last-gasp winner was allowed to stand.

Martin felt Brewster had knocked Naughton to the ground before setting up Khadra, and went on to the pitch at the final whistle to make his feelings known to the officials.

He said: “I trust Kyle. He’s clipped his heels. The boy’s not meant to, but Kyle has run across him.

“It is a foul. It’s the easiest decision the referee has got to make all night.

“It’s the 94th minute, the guy’s running back towards his own goal, he clips his heels, just give the free-kick. It’s really not difficult.

“But he hasn’t given it. We should still deal with the aftermath of it.

“We don’t and everyone feels completely different about the performance than they did 30 seconds previously.”

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