Burnley 1-0 Sheffield United: The Warmdown
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Galvanised spirit is back

Burnley were depleted in this match. Dwight McNeil, Jay Rodriguez and Matej Vydra were already injured before Charlie Taylor pulled his hamstring in the opening minutes.

This adversity was reminiscent of Burnley's injury crisis at the end of last season, where the Clarets went on a remarkable unbeaten run that defied their plight. That galvanised energy had been missing when Burnley began this current season and were short on numbers. 

The Clarets are a different animal when they are full of confidence. Effort and endeavour goes up by ten or twenty percent and they are very difficult to beat. 

Unsung heroes

As a result of Burnley's skeletal squad, Josh Benson has been fast tracked into some first-team action over the course of this campaign. However, the 21-year-old has had very few opportunities in his preferred central-midfield position. A lack of injury-free wingers has opened up spaces on the flanks and Benson has jumped at the chance. 

At the other end of the age spectrum, 32-year-old Erik Pieters has been asked to fill in at right-midfield, left-midfield and centre-back. The Dutchman would have been forgiven for forgetting what his normal position was. But he was back there on Tuesday night after the unfortunate injury to Taylor. 

The two players encapsulate what this football club is all about. Nobody is overly concerned about individual needs; it's all about the collective goals. That is the mentality that Dyche has instilled at Turf Moor. Selflessness and a desire to run through brick walls. It doesn't matter if you're 18 or 80, the remit remains the same.  

Bullish Blades should look to Norwich City

In the 2018-19 season, Norwich City came up from the Championship and made the bold decision to not spend their promotion money on new players. Instead, they used that money to pay off debts and innovate training facilities. Sensible business decisions. 

Inevitably, the club were relegated but Delia Smith and company remained calm and composed, retaining the services of their manager, Daniel Farke, and the vast majority of their players. 

It's a bit different at Sheffield United. Money has been spent but it has been spent poorly. Nonetheless, Chris Wilder is at the centre of that football club and all their recent successes. The Blades massively overachieved by gaining promotion in the first place and then they initially took the Premier League by storm.

It's rare to get a manager that is the focal point of a football club. Too often, owners become trigger happy and seek out another solution when the going gets tough. It would be a tremendous mistake to abandon the culture that Wilder has built at Bramall Lane. 

Mistakes in the transfer market have hit hard alongside the effects of the pandemic. That doesn't mean you need to rip everything up to try and salvage your top-flight status. Accept relegation, learn lessons from this difficult campaign, and back Wilder to bring the club back into the Premier League. 

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