Sheffield United fans must be patient with Morgan Gibbs-White, urges Blades boss

Paul Heckingbottom has called for patience after Morgan Gibbs-White returned to full training for the first time in 2022 – not only from Sheffield United fans but the player himself.

Sheffield United's Morgan Gibbs-White. Picture: Simon Bellis/Sportimage
Sheffield United's Morgan Gibbs-White. Picture: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

And as well as trying to manager Gibbs-White’s return, he will have to carefully look after the mindset of Rhian Brewster after the striker suffered a “significant” hamstring injury having finally hit his stride as a Blade.

Gibbs-White returned to Wolverhampton Wanderers in the new year to recover from a knee injury but fears his loan could end were unfounded and he was back yesterday.

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“We need to give him a little programme to get him up to speed and the fans need to be patient,” said Heckingbottom.

“I see straight away when he’s back on the grass we’ve missed him. He’s someone I enjoy working with and watching and we all know what he can bring.

“We want to help him and push him to get back up to speed as quickly as possible because he’s got moments in him which are really good.”

Gibbs-White’s last appearance, at Fulham on December 20 is the only game he has played since December 4. The manager was refusing to put a timescale on when the 22-year-old will be back at full throttle.

“If you ask Morgan, he’ll be starting on Friday night (when the Blades are at Birmingham City in the Championship),” said Heckingbottom.

“Physically now everyone’s happy with his injury, medically he’s fine. He had some real good moments in training, even though it was only a light session.

“We’re going to push him as quickly as we can, get as many training minutes and physical sessions into him and who knows? There may be a necessity to use him quicker.”

Heckingbottom said Gibbs-White was “very down” after injuring his hamstring at Peterborough United after three goals in his previous six matches.

“When you are injured, once the players go out on the grass and train, you feel that loneliness,” he said.

“He’s been staying at home so he can get that support, reassurance and distraction from his family. You balance the treatment and rehab as you get to the back end with how mentally fatigued the player might be.

“Every time you move to the next step of your rehab you’re buzzing, but you’re only buzzing for a little bit then you have another dip.

“But myself, the staff and the rest of the players have probably got a lot more experience of that than Rhian.”