Sheffield United ratings: John Fleck bosses midfield battle as Blades sink Derby County at Bramall Lane

Billy Sharp celebrates his first goal (Photo: Sportimage)
Billy Sharp celebrates his first goal (Photo: Sportimage)
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Sheffield United picked up maximum reward for a whole-hearted display with a 3-1 win over Derby County at Bramall Lane.

Yorkshire Post sports editor Nick Westby was at Bramall Lane and rated the Blades' performances.

Jamal Blackman - Barely had a shot to save until the very last moments, but even then, couldn’t do much with Bryson’s late header - 7

Jake Wright - Strong in the tackle and rarely gave anything away. Pulled out of position a couple of times but there was always cover - 7.

Jack O’Connell - Booked for a tactical foul but otherwise rock solid and dependable. Defended with his body superbly - 8

Chris Basham - Part of a back three that comfortably dealt with anything Derby threw at them - 7

Enda Stevens - Got forward to support whenever he could - 7

Kieron Freeman - Set up the second goal by busying himself down the right. Also tracked back well - 7

John Fleck - Made a wonderful saving tackle to deny Matej Vydra and then did likewise to deny a rampaging Vydra in the second half. Nearly sealed it late on - 8

Paul Coutts - Calming influence in midfield and a menace with his left-foot deliveries. Played the game at his pace - 8

Mark Duffy - Quiet game in behind the front two before being replaced shortly after the hour - 6.

Caolan Lavery - Struggled to get into the game, and then stretchered off shortly after the break with a nasty-looking head injury - 6.

Billy Sharp - Two chances, two goals; goodnight. Well, three chances, because he drew a smart save from Carson in between times, but who’s counting? - 7.

Substitutes
Ched Evans (on for Lavery, 53) - Chased and harried as a striker should when a team is 2-0 up - 6

Samir Carruthers (on for Duffy, 65) - A very busy cameo down the right flank, causing a nuisance of himself on the counter before limping off after 16 minutes with injury - 7

John Lundstram (on for Carruthers, 81) - Not on long enough to really influence.

Unused substitutes: Cameron Carter-Vickers; Daniel Lafferty; Jake Eastwood; David Brooks