SHEFFIELD United winger Ryan Flynn says losing to Bradford City may have been an important ‘turning point’ in the club’s season.
The Blades, whose game today at Colchester United been postponed due to a frozen pitch, were humbled by the Bantams in the northern area quarter-finals of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy in November.
However, Danny Wilson’s men have subsequently gone on to record 11 victories in 14 games and sit only a point behind second-placed Huddersfield Town in the League One table with a game in hand.
Flynn said: “It was a disappointing night but, hopefully, at the end of the season, we will look back on it as a turning point which wasn’t so disappointing.
“After that game, we had a sit down and analysed the way the season was going. We decided that we needed to go back to basics and make sure we were difficult to beat.
“I think we have built a base on that,” he added. “As long as we focused on the basics and made sure we were hard to beat, we had a lot of quality to get goals. Now it’s just a case of playing as a team and I think there has been a change in the performances since the Bradford game.
“Whoever has come into the team has played really well – even when we got beat against Carlisle,” he reflected. “There is a buzz around the place, everyone is really happy and that tells in the football we are playing.”
Flynn joined the Blades last summer from Falkirk but has started only 10 games so far as he adjusts to the demands of League One.
“When you step up and play with better players, you become a better player, too,” he reflected. “I got a chance over Christmas when I thought I did well but then I got an illness and now I am hoping to get back in the team.
“There are still a lot of points to be played for and there will be a lot of twists and turns. The same group of teams have been up there from the start of the season and it will go right to the wire.
“You always feel like you are going to do it. I definitely feel it. There’s a belief within the team and the squad and you just hope you take that into games.”
Edinburgh-born Flynn, 23, grew up supporting Hibernian, and admits that he is excited by the arrival of former Hearts and Rangers defender David Weir at Bramall Lane. Former Scotland captain Weir, 41, is training with the Blades with a view to securing a short- term deal.
“It’s an odd situation because nearly all my mates are Hearts supporters but ‘Big Davey’ is a top man. He’s obviously been around a long time and there are moments in training where you can see his experience. I don’t know him too well but it’s strange to be training with him after growing up watching him play for Scotland. I don’t say anything about that, though, because I don’t want to make him feel old!”