Alan Biggs at Large: Maybe a play off place wouldn’t be such a bad thing for Sheffield United to finish up with

Nigel Clough
Nigel Clough

At this of all times – with shocks right off the scale – this column should know better. It’s just that I can’t really see Sheffield United closing a mighty gap of 18 points to win automatic promotion.

Can you?

But, in hoping to look a mug and not for the first time, there are two matches the Blades simply have to win to keep any hopes alive.

And one is on Saturday at home to the best team I’ve seen in League One this season, fittingly the leaders, Swindon Town.

The other is at joint-top Bristol City on February 14, which could be delayed if United beat Preston in their FA Cup replay.

But get six points from those two, and start dispatching the inferior sides who keep frustrating them, and Nigel Clough’s men just might have a chance with momentum in their favour.

If they fall short, it could be well short. Perhaps no bad thing?

To beat the club’s mental block, United need to sneak in and catch the play-offs by surprise for once.

And maybe surprise their fans with the outcome.

n Written before the big game with Spurs on Wednesday, which took place after the Telegraph went to press.