Oldham 1-1 Blades - report
United picked up another point on the road but will be disappointing not to have won Saturday's encounter at Oldham.
On the day that former Blades manager Howard Kendall passed away, 2,111 Blades fans made the trip over the Pennines.
Former Blade Danny Philliskirk opened the scoring before Matty Done levelled. Oldham were reduced to ten minute just after the hour but the visitors rued a number of missed chances.
McGahey made his first league start of the season and Kieran Wallace was also included as manager Adkins made two changes. McEveley missed out through injury and Coutts dropped to the bench. Chris Basham captains the side.
Apart from Basham driving at the Oldham back line, which saw Freeman drill the ball across goal, in the initial ten minutes the home fans were more enthused. Poleon sliced a volley wide after United failed to clear a free-kick, then Winchester's shot was deflected over, paving the way for the opening goal. From the resulting Jones corner into a crowded six-yard box, the ball was flicked to the back post where PHILLISKIRK directed his header home.
The response from United was a spell of pressure without testing home goalkeeper Cornell, whilst for Oldham, Winchester's shot on the turn, after a good team move, was wide.
On the half hour, though, United were back in the game and Scougall was the architect. He won possession and jinked through a line of defenders before laying off for DONE, first time, to clip a curler beyond Cornell's left and into the corner of the net.
Sharp hit a post soon after but an assistant referee's flag had been raised, whilst closer to the break, the home side got back on top. From Winchester's cross, Poleon's back post header was pushed away by Howard and the Blades goalkeeper denied the same striker on 44 minutes, following a shot on the turn.
Early in the second period the Blades were the more dominant force. Adams shot wide from a Wallace cross and then from a corner, Sharp, Basham and Collins were all involved before goalkeeper Cornell smothered on his line.
Before the hour mark, Adams went over in the box but there was no penalty forthcoming, Basham headed across goal from Baxter's free-kick and Adams played Done through, beating the offside trap, but with his unfavoured right foot the goalscorer shot across goal and wide.
The entertainment continued, Baxter's break from midfield saw him shoot just over and then Burn, on a booking and after a number of fouls, was shown a second yellow card for dragging back Sharp.
A number of substitutions were made and United continued to force Oldham back. Two chances in the space of three minutes would have left wondering Adkins how his side were not in front. The first was from Wallace's low cross, but Sharp, inside the six yard box, sidefooted wide. Sharp then turned provider, pulling back for Scougall, but the Scotsman's effort came back off a post.
As the final ten minutes approached United were still looking for a winner and Campbell-Ryce was introduced. Oldham, however, with ten men, were happy just not to lose the encounter and slowed down the action at every opportunity.
Three minutes of injury-time was announced and Adams stung the palms of Cornell, whilst a Campbell-Ryce cross caused problems but Oldham clung on to share the spoils.
Oldham: Cornell, J Wilson, Kelly, Jones (Dieng 67), Poleon (Fuller 67), Philliskirk, Winchester, Burn, Fulton (B Wilson 82), Lafferty, Dummigan.
Unused: Coleman, Croft, Yeates, Eckersley.
Blades: Howard, Freeman, Basham, Sharp, Baxter, Done (Sammon 63), Collins, Scougall (Campbell-Ryce 82), Adams, K Wallace, McGahey.
Unused: Coutts, Woolford, Reed, Long, Kennedy.