I would like to talk about three players this week, says Matthew Bell.
The first is the returning Chris Porter, cast aside by more than one manager in his time at the Lane and the subject of more than his fare share of criticism from unrealistic Blades fans who expect him to be something he never has been and never will be.
What you get from Porter is hard work, a threat in the air that no other United forward possesses and a willingness to go toe to toe with big central defenders. He wins headers, holds the ball up and brings other people into the game.
However, he does not have any pace, can be ponderous and is not a natural goalscorer – he might score seven or eight in a season.
Every club needs four strikers of differing styles to start or bring on as substitute, so with Porter, King, Taylor and Miller we have those players who will all be required and who will all contribute throughout the season. And as been pointed out in this newspaper, United’s most prolific period last season came with Porter and Miller playing together.
Nevertheless, so far none of our strikers have yet demanded to be picked every week. Without one player our goals-for column would have been even more paltry than it is.
Harry Maguire has been relatively prolific. Harry has had a mixed season, making a few gaffes but has also played well at other times and has made his mark four times in the opposing penalty area (his other was a bit of a fluke).
Stephen McGinn’s set-pieces have been a constant help for him.