VIDEO: Blades have the belief back ahead of Manchester United test

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Nigel Adkins insists Sheffield United have a renewed sense of belief ahead of their visit to Manchester United in the FA Cup third round.

The Blades make the journey to Old Trafford with four wins in their last six games, including a maximum points-haul in December - which led to Adkins lifting the League One Manager of the Month award.

And the Bramall Lane boss said: “There’s a growing belief among the players, I can sense it.

“We’ve been through a good December, there’s been a consistency of selection and there’s a growing spirit and belief about everybody.

“The league is where we really need to do it but this is the FA Cup and you try to win every single game.

“You go as far as you can and you respect it. It’s the biggest cup competition, from a domestic point of view, in the world. There’s no better.”

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Captain Jay McEveley, meanwhile, insists United aren’t just going to Manchester to make up the numbers against their illustrious namesakes: “I am sure their form can be exploited,”the defender said.

“We are working on things, our game plan, on how we can cause them problems.

“We’re not just going to go there, sit back and let them have all of the ball and not get in their faces at all. We’ll do that at the right time.

“We’ve got a game plan, we’re going to stick to it. We can score goals, we can cause teams problems with the players we’ve got and we’re going to go there and try to do that.”

Meanwhile Adkins’ opposite number at Old Trafford, Louis van Gaal, says he isn’t fazed by Pep Guardiola’s declaration that he is bound for the Premier League.

“Every manager has that right to announce he is leaving,” van Gaal said.

“I’m at the end of my career so for me it’s not so interesting.”