Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Barry Bannan believes the Owls must not “give into the passion” in tonight’s Steel City derby.
The Scotland international – who with 13 yellow cards to his name this season has been booked more than any other player in the Championship – believes discipline will be key when the Blades arrive at Hillsborough.
Bannan’s team-mate Fernando Forestieri was sent off last month for celebrating a late equaliser in Wednesday’s previous derby encounter, at Rotherham United, and tonight promises to be another feisty encounter.
Bannan said: “The gaffer spoke to us a couple of weeks ago when we played Rotherham and he touched on that (discipline).
“It’s about keeping your head and not giving into the passion.
“It’s a derby and it’s a crazy gam, but we need to be sensible, really.
“The gaffer is experienced. He has been about and he has played in millions of derby games so I’m sure he’ll touch on it again.”
After slumping to a 4-2 derby defeat last season at Hillsborough the 29-year-old midfielder knows how important tonight’s game is to Owls supporters.
“It is a massive game and we will create a great atmosphere,” he said.
“We are in a better place now and the fans will be like a 12th man and I can’t wait for it.
“The fans know what the game is all about and they’ll be right behind us. Hopefully in the last couple of weeks we have given them something to shout about and we need to give them something to work off as well.”
The Owls are on a seven-match unbeaten run under new manager Steve Bruce and are aiming for a third win at Hillsborough in 10 days after victories over Swansea City and Brentford.
But they still trail United by 17 points in the table, although the gap to the play-off spots has been cut to seven points.
Bannan said: ”We have got a bit of confidence and are on a good run ourselves. We know that United are doing really well, too, so it will be a good game.
“We go into it confident knowing that we want to win the game and we can win the game.
“With it being a derby game you want to win it for yourself, the fans, your family and give everybody that boost.
“We are just concentrating on winning the game and keeping our good run going.
“They (United) have been brilliant and you can’t knock them. Obviously I don’t want to be stood here saying this, but you have to give credit where credit is due.
“They have had a good season and they had a good season last year, too.
“They have done really well and have got good players, but we have got good players as well and we are really confident of coming in and winning.
“They are a team in form and they are going to be a danger like any team in this league so we will show them a bit of respect, but not too much.
“We know what we can do on our day and we are confident of winning the game.”