Paul Heckingbottom pleased with Sheffield United's game management in 2-0 win over Luton Town

Paul Heckingbottom was pleased with the way Sheffield United managed their game against Luton Town after going 2-0 up for the second time in a week, but this time coming away with all three points.

At Preston North End on Tuesday, the hosts had snatched a 2-2 draw even after having had a man sent off, so Reece Burke's straight red card at Bramall lane on Saturday was no cause for complacency either, but the Blades saw to it that the Hatters could not respond to Rhian Brewster and Jack Robinson's goals.

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"I'm pleased for lots of reasons - pleased with the performances, pleased to be back here (at Bramall Lane) after two months and get another 2-0 win to carry on where we left off and pleased to put Tuesday night to bed as well," reflected manager Heckingbottom.

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PLEASED: Paul Heckingbottom saw his Sheffield United side win for the first time since ChristmasPLEASED: Paul Heckingbottom saw his Sheffield United side win for the first time since Christmas
PLEASED: Paul Heckingbottom saw his Sheffield United side win for the first time since Christmas

"It was very similar, getting on top, dominating, doing all the hard work before we go down to 10 but this time I thought we managed the game really, really well.

"We'd have loved to score more goals with the opportunities we had but it was a good win against a good side."

It was Sheffield United' s first win since beating Fulham on December 20. Since then they have only played three times because of a spate of Covid-19 call-offs.

"Wins are what it's all about but it's only the Derby game for lots of reasons which I didn't enjoy," he said. "The performance at Wolves and how tough we made it for them, yeah, we conceded poor goals but it was the only way they were going score because we played so well. Similar at Preston against another tough, energetic side. We dominated and naivety and poor decisions costs us three points, we only got one.

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"Performance-wise, it's another strong one today. We're heading in the right direction."

Brewster and Robinson's goals two minutes apart at the start of the second half decided the game.

"They came out of the traps (after half-time) and we didn't handle that," said Luton's Nathan Jones. "In those ten minutes, the game was lost."

For his part, Heckingbottom was pleased with the way his players upped their game after a first 45 minutes they dominated, but lacked intensity in.

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"We wanted to move the ball quicker and get Rhian involved more," he explained. "We wanted him to receive more passes for us. We showed him examples on the video at half-time.

"He's been working with Jack (Lester, the Blades' head of performance) over the last couple of months. The biggest thing's Jack's seen was all his effort on goal, there's not enough between the goalposts. Today was perfect, that's where he should be.

"We spoke to the experienced boys about managing the game. We've earned the right to see the game out, 2-0 up against a good side.

"We spoke a lot about managing the game. If we need to slow it down we do but when the ball's in play we need to inject energy at times because we've got the extra body."

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