The more fit Sheffield United strikers the merrier says Slavisa Jokanovic as Lys Mousset and David McGoldrick return to training

Slavisa Jokanovic said this week he had been struggling to find a place for Oli McBurnie in his Sheffield United team but the thought of more centre-forwards confusing matters is one he is looking forward to.

Lys Mousset and David McGoldrick returned to training after injury on Thursday, and Jokanovic has spoken to Oli Burke about getting more from him after a possible deadline-day move fell through.

Despite having six senior centre-forwards to choose from, Jokanovic has only been playing with one this month, using the 4-2-3-1 formation that brought him so much success at Fulham.

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Club captain Billy Sharp has been the preferred choice, whilst Rhian Brewster and Burke have featured wide.

OPTIONS: David McGoldrick, Lys Mousset and Oliver Burke at Doncaster Rovers in pre-seasonOPTIONS: David McGoldrick, Lys Mousset and Oliver Burke at Doncaster Rovers in pre-season
OPTIONS: David McGoldrick, Lys Mousset and Oliver Burke at Doncaster Rovers in pre-season

The return of Mousset and McGoldrick, though, "is positive news for all of us and for the players too," said Jokanovic ahead of Saturday's Championship visit from Derby County.

"It’s not just about 11 guys, I need more people and more competition. They are fighting to be in the squad and be on the bench and in the starting XI. When some quality people come back, it’s always important news for us.

"They started today working with the group, they will need some time to be available to compete. They are working with the group that didn’t participate in the last game and I have time to make the decision."

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McGoldrick can also play in the No 10 position, although Iliman Ndiaye and Morgan Gibbs-White have also performed well there since the team's form improved this month.

Despite what happened at the end of August when a proposed Blackburn Rovers loan move essentially ran out of time and Middlesbrough were also linked with the Scot, Burke remains part of the plans too, and started Tuesday's League Cup tie against Southampton, which the Premier League side won on penalties.

To get the best out of him, Jokanovic wants him to trust himself more.

"He is part of the group and is a Sheffield United player, what happened is not important and he is fighting to be on the field," said his manager.

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"We know his characteristics and his biggest mistake is not to trust in himself. This player has some valid characteristics and if people ask why I don’t use some of them, it is my job and I must upset people around me.

"They must be professional and put me in more trouble.

"Burkey can attack very well, he has a lot of speed and we need to support and help him to find right timing and moments to find the spaces.

"We expect him to collaborate and be more clever on the field, and don’t switch off. He needs to be always available for the support on the field."

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