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In focus: Sheffield United

24 June 2016

Ahead of the 2016/17 Sky Bet League One campaign, takes a look at the teams MK Dons will face next season.

Next up is Sheffield United and in nine of the 10 previous meetings between the Dons and the Blades, only a single goal has separated the two sides – the other match ended in a goalless draw.

Founded: 1889
Nickname: Blades
Mascot: Captain Blade
Stadium: Bramall Lane (capacity 32,702)
Home colours: Red and white striped shirts, black shorts, black socks

Twitter: @SUFC_tweets
Facebook: Sheffield United Football Club

Sheffield United swooped to secure the services of former Northampton Town boss Chris Wilder following the departure of Nigel Adkins at the end of the 2015/16 season.

Wilder led the Cobblers to the Sky Bet League Two title last campaign by a comprehensive margin. He also has a National League play-off win to his name during his time as manager of Oxford United.

The 48-year-old, who also managed Alfreton Town and Halifax Town, enjoyed a reasonably successful career as player – he made over 400 appearances for the likes of Rotherham United, Notts County, Bradford City, Brighton & Hove Albion, as well as the Blades.

Key and notable players
Striker Billy Sharp walked away with both the Player of the Year and Players’ Player of the Year awards for the Blades last season, while he also bagged Goal of the Season.

The 30-year-old found the net 21 times in 2015/16, which put him ahead of young forward Che Adams (12) in the goalscoring charts.

Sharp was also one of six players to start 30 games for United last campaign along with goalkeeper George Long and defenders Niell Collins and David Edgar, as well as midfielders Chris Basham and Dean Hammond.

Last season
Sheff Utd ended last season in 11th place, which was their lowest league finish since their relegation from the Championship in 2010/11.

The Blades started the campaign in reasonably good fashion but slipped out of the play-off places in October and never regained their spot in the top six. Their form did improve after Christmas but a disappointing February and March dented any chance of promotion.

They enjoyed a little more success in the cup competitions, reaching the Third Round of the Emirates FA Cup, where they were unlucky to lose 1-0 to eventual winners Manchester United. They also reached the area quarter-finals in the EFL Trophy.

Wilder has wasted no time in starting his restructure at Sheff Utd, releasing no less than 10 players and transfer listing an additional seven.

Among those to depart Bramall Lane are Mark Howard, Harrison McGahey, Jay McEveley, Ryan Flynn, Jose Baxter and Jamal Campbell-Ryce, while James Wallace, Dean Hammond and Martyn Woolford are some of those available for transfers.

The Blades have also dipped into the transfer market to sign winger Mark Duffy, following his departure from Birmingham City, and defender Chris Hussey, who moves to Yorkshire from Bury for a nominal fee.

Goalkeeper George Long has also signed a new two-year deal with the club.

Head to head
Dons wins: 5
Last Dons win: 1-0, 17 Jan 2015 (Stadium MK)
Biggest win: 1-0, five times

Biggest Rochdale win: 3-2, 28 Aug 2007 (Stadium MK)
Last Rochdale win: 2-1, 28 Oct 2014 (Stadium MK)
Sheff Utd wins: 4

Last draw: 0-0, 9 Mar 2013 (Bramall Lane)
Draws: 1

Watch MK Dons take on Sheff Utd at Stadium MK in 2016/17, as well as 22 other home League One matches, by becoming a Season Ticket holder.

Adult Season Tickets are priced from £28 a month while under-21s can enjoy the full campaign from just £12.34 a month. Under-18 Season Tickets are priced from only £2.50 a month and under-12s can go FREE with a Young Dons membership.

To purchase a Season Ticket visit the Box Office at Stadium MK/kiosk at centre:mk or call 0333 200 5343. You can also download an application form and post it to Box Office, Stadium MK, Stadium Way, Milton Keynes, MK1 1ST.

The Dons will visit Bramall Lane on Saturday 29 October before hosting the Blades at Stadium MK on Saturday 22 April 2017 – the penultimate weekend of the Sky Bet League One season.
2016/17 MATCHES

Ryan Hall, Paul Heald, Kyle McFadzean, Jon-Paul McGovern, Izale McLeod, Stephen Quinn.
Played for both

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