DANNY Wilson, the Sheffield United manager, last night claimed that Dave Kitson can write his name into Bramall Lane’s history books.
Kitson, who signed a short-term contract with the South Yorkshire club earlier this month, won praise from both coaching staff and teammates alike after delivering a combative display during Tuesday’s derby with Doncaster Rovers.
Wilson, speaking ahead of this afternoon’s visit to Yeovil Town, said: “Dave can definitely be a major asset for us. Having a player of his calibre on board and seeing him in action gives everyone a massive boost.
“He might not be quite where we want him to be in terms of his fitness yet. He’s probably not where he wants to be either.
“But Dave’s got a lot of fitness between the ears. The legs might not get you there but the mind definitely will.
“That’s the benefit having his type of experience. It counts for a lot.”
Despite refusing to divulge whether the former Portsmouth, Reading and Stoke City centre-forward will start at Huish Park, Wilson told his pre-match media briefing that Kitson’s presence could help United live-up to their billing as pre-season favourites for promotion from League One into the Championship.
Wilson’s side climbed to sixth in the table following the midweek stalemate with their neighbours.
However, despite travelling to Somerset still unbeaten in the competition this term, United’s failure to win any of their past three matches is a source of consternation among some supporters.
With Michael Doyle and fellow midfielder Ryan Flynn still suspended, Wilson must decide whether to hand Shaun Miller only his second start since arriving from Crewe Alexandra or persist with the quartet which failed to spark against Rovers.
John Cofie, on loan from Manchester United, could also be recalled after dropping to the bench while Kitson hopes his second-half cameo will be rewarded with a more prominent role as United look to overcome opponents who are seeking to avoid a fourth straight defeat.
“Obviously the impact Dave makes here will depend on his fitness,” Wilson said. “But he’s got great self-belief and that’s a wonderful thing to have.”
Gary Johnson, the Yeovil manager, lamented his team’s defending during a 4-1 reverse at Leyton Orient, saying: “We’ve got to help the young players get through this by working hard.”
* Dave Kitson has played just over half-an-hour of competitive football since completing Portsmouth’s Championship fixture with Derby County at Fratton Park in April.