Blades’ line-up for Wembley 
is ‘decided’

Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough.
Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough.
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Nigel Clough admits he already knows his Sheffield United team which will walk out at Wembley on Sunday afternoon.

The Blades manager has promised to make changes tonight for the South Yorkshire derby with Rotherham United, protecting several of his star players for the FA Cup semi-final with Hull City.

Victory tonight for the Blades would keep alive their slim hopes of catching sixth-placed Peterborough United and gatecrashing the play-offs.

But asked if United could do without a Yorkshire derby five days before Wembley, Clough replied: “Yes. It’s a re-arranged game. Because of the cup success, we have Rotherham on a Tuesday night five days before the semi-final.

“We will put the best side out we can without taking any chances for Sunday.

“We won’t risk anybody; there will be a few, although we haven’t got that many players that we can put an entire separate team out.

“We are not writing this game off at all, but without doubt Sunday is a priority. That comes first, but it’s fair to say we are not going to put our strongest side out.

“The Wembley team is pretty much sorted. But it’s an opportunity for other players to put a marker down for the last five games, and beyond that, into next season as well.”

Chris Porter (back) is a doubt for tonight, but Jose Baxter (ankle) will play some part.

Clough and counterpart Steve Evans are adversaries from their Conference days.

“They have had momentum from getting promoted, and just kept it going, (have) improved the squad,” Clough said. “They’ve spent a few quid on bringing good players in and are a very hard-working team.

“We have had our battles over the years.”