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Match Reports

Blades 2-1 Blackburn - report

27 August 2019

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The Blades secured a safe passage into the third round of the Carabao Cup with a hard-fought success over Blackburn Rovers at Bramall Lane.

First-half goals from Richard Stearman and Ollie Norwood proved to be enough, despite Sam Gallagher scoring in the second-half for Blackburn.

For the cup encounter, boss Wilder made ten changes, with Norwood the only survivor from Saturday's starting XI against Leicester City. Osborn and Bešić made their United debuts, whilst McBurnie and Morrison were handed first starts.

The visitors were quickly out of the blocks, with Armstrong curling an early effort inches wide, before the former Newcastle man wasted an even better chance, seeing his penalty saved by Moore, after Dack was fouled by Stearman, who was subsequently booked.

In the 24th minute, the Blades were forced into a change, with Bryan limping out of the action and being replaced by Stevens, who dropped into the back three. Led by Morrison, United got themselves into the game, with Freeman forcing a corner, which came to nothing. At the other end, Rovers threatened again, this time Rothwell firing an effort wide from the edge of the box.

But on 31 minutes, United took the lead, after a Blackburn mistake led to a corner. Norwood delivered into the box, Leutwiler flapped under pressure and STEARMAN headed home into the unguarded net. The visitors nearly hit straight back though, with Dack feeding Armstrong, who was again denied by the advancing Moore.

In the third additional minute of the first-half, NORWOOD added a well-taken second for the Blades, firing home from outside the penalty area, after good work by Morrison, to fashion space for the shot.

At the break, McBurnie was withdrawn and replaced by Luke Freeman. The opening 20 minutes of the second period saw little in the way of goalscoring opportunities, prior to Mousset replacing Norwood, which saw Morrison drop into a deeper midfield role. And the French striker almost had an immediate impact, having been played in behind the Rovers defence by fellow substitute Freeman.

With 18 minutes remaining, Blackburn gave themselves hope, as substitute GALLAGHER headed home at the back post from Armstrong's cross. With the Blades back on the attack, Rovers skipper Lenihan was carded for a cynic foul on the advancing Luke Freeman, although an advantage would have suited United better, with Mousset left running at Williams.

The clocking was ticking down, but Rovers almost snatched an equaliser, as Rankin-Costello rounded Moore before seeing his shot blocked on the line by Stearman. Four minutes of added time were signaled, but Moore held firm from Lenihan's header as United secured their spot in the third round.


Blades: Moore, McBurnie (L. Freeman 45) Sharp, Morrison, Jagielka, Norwood (Mousset 65), K. Freeman, Stearman, Bryan (Stevens 24) Osborn, Bešić.
Unused: Basham, Lundstram, McGoldrick, Verrips.

Rovers: Leutwiler, Nyambe, Lenihan, Williams, Cunningham, Evans, Smallwood (Travis 65), Buckley, Dack (Gallagher 60), Rothwell (Rankin-Costello 71), Armstrong.
Unused: Walton, Grayson, Chapman, Graham.


As it happened...

19:44
We're underway here at the Lane.

3'
Bradley Dack with the first moment of the game.

He picks the ball off Besic and raids down the right, but as he advances into the area his cross/shot is tame and claimed by Moore.

4'
First effort in anger and it comes from the visitors.

Corry Evans with an effort from distance which curls just wide of Moore's far stick. 0-0.

7'
Penalty to Blackburn.

Stearman trips Dack in the area.

8'
SAVED!

Moore guesses the right way and saves Adam Armstrong's low spot kick.

Richie Smallwood's follow up is also blocked. 0-0.

9'
Another chance for Rovers.

United give the ball away in midfied and John Buckley picks up the loose ball before driving towards goal. His run ends with a curling effort wide of the far post.

13'
One crunching challenge too many for Besic who gives away a free-kick. No yellow though, just a warning for the debutant. 0-0.

17'
Break in play as Kean Bryan for United and Dack for Rovers are down having treatment. 0-0.

19'
Both are back up and running, Moore resumes the game, 0-0.

23'
Bryan is down again, he needs more treatment so we have a break in play.

23'
Bryan can't continue so Chris Wilder makes the first change as Enda Stevens replaces the ex-Man City ace.

27'
United on the front with Morrison feeding Kieron Freeman down the right.

The wing back delivers a low cross into the area which is turned behind. The following corner is also cleared, but better from the home side. 0-0.

29'
Close!

Joe Rothwell receives the ball 25 yards out and it sits up nicely for a shot. The connection is good but it flashes just wide of Moore's near post. 0-0.

31'
GOAL FOR BLADES!

31'
Smallwood gives away a corner and Norwood's delivery goes all the way through to the back post where Stearman is on hand to nod in. 1-0.

33'
Armstrong with an immediate chance to level, but Moore is quickly off his line to smother the effort from close range.

41'
Blackburn have enjoyed the better of the last 10 minutes but no clear chances for either side. 1-0 Blades.

45'
Three minutes added time

2-0 UNITED!!

45+2'

45+2'
Ollie Norwood with a sweet strike which bent away from the 'keeper just before the break.

20:33
Blades 2 - 0 Blackburn

The visitors had an early penalty saved by Simon Moore, and United have taken advantage leading through Stearman's header and Norwood's strike.

20:49
Second half underway

46'
United make a change at half time as McBurnie is replaced by Luke Freeman.

53'
Quiet start to the second half, nothing really to report. Still 2-0 United.

56'
Blackburn corner picks out Dack on the edge of the area. He hits a first time volley but Stearman is quickly out to make an important block.

59'
Driving run by Rothwell looks dangerous but across comes Jagielka to make a vital challenge.

59'
Change for Rovers as Dack is replaced by Sam Gallagher.

65'
Blackburn make another change as Smallwood is replaced by Lewis Travis.

65'
United also make a change as Norwood is replaced by Lys Mousset who makes his debut.

68'
Quite an introduction from Mousset who sprints into the channel to collect a through ball. He drives into the area and is about to take aim but at last ditch challenge denies him a debut goal. 2-0.

71'
Final change for Rovers. Joe Rankin-Costello on for Joe Rothwell.

21:15
Attendance: 9,714 (553)

72'
Goal for Rovers.

Game on here as Armstrong crosses to the back post and sub Sam Gallagher heads beyond Moore.

77'
Armstrong looking to take aim but Besic is there to make another strong challenge for United. 2-1.

78'
Booking here for Lenihan for a cynical challenge on Luke Freeman.

79'
Kieron Freeman with a low pass into Mousset who produces an impressive turn and shot. Flag is raised though for offside.

85'
Big chance for Rovers.

Sub Rankin-Costello breaks clear, rounds Moore but United get bodies back on the line to clear.

89'
Chance again for Rovers.

Gallagher sprints inside the area, cuts the ball back to Rankin-Costello but his shot is smothered by a ruck of United defenders.

89'
Cunningham halts a counter attack and is booked.

90'
Four minutes added

90'
Flying challenge from Morrison earns him a booking

21:38
Blackburn boss Tony Mowbray is booked, he protests and is sent off.

21:38
Blades 2 - 1 Blackburn

Goals from Stearman and Norwood send United into round three. Gallagher pulled one back for Rovers in the second half.


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