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Gaffer on injured duo

4 September 2014

Blades boss Nigel Clough remains optimistic defender Craig Alcock will be fit to return to action when the Blades host Rochdale at Bramall Lane, following this week's enforced international break.


The former Peterborough full-back missed Saturday's draw with Preston North End after being diagnosed with a thigh injury following the Capital One Cup success over West Ham.


Clough admitted considered naming Alcock in his starting eleven at Deepdale before being advised it could aggravate what has been described as a 'relatively minor' complaint.


The Gaffer explained: "Craig hasn't got anything that we believe is too serious. But that doesn't mean we want to rush him and, quite often, the best thing for problems like this is rest.


"However, the thing you've got to take into account with muscle problems is that they can be quite delicate until their healed properly.


"What we don't want to do is ask him to come back too quickly and then lose him for four or five weeks, so hopefully the break has come at a good time for Craig."


Meanwhile, Clough also hopes Stefan Scougall will have overcome a knee problem in time to be in contention to face Keith Hill's Dale, but added United will be cautious about rushing the midfielder back too soon.


He added: "If everything goes according to plan during the next week or so then there's a chance he might be okay for the Rochdale fixture.


"But, what we won't be doing, is taking any risks or asking too much of him too quickly.


"We want Stefan to recover properly and correctly because we don't want to risk losing him for a longer period of time at this stage of the season."


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