Chris Basham could revert to the centre of midfield for Sheffield United’s clash with Oldham Athletic tomorrow - despite boss Nigel Clough insisting that the former Blackpool man has been United’s “outstanding player” over the past month.
Basham endured a difficult start to life at Bramall Lane, with a string of unconvincing performances in midfield. But since becoming a father, Basham has also excelled at centre-half - although the return of Paddy McCarthy from suspension, and Jay McEveley’s own good form, means he could be back in the middle for the visit of Lee Johnson’s Oldham.
“The gaffer’s knowledge of football is massive,” Basham said.
“So if he thinks my best position is centre-half, I’m sure he’s right but I’m happy to do a job wherever.
“I feel very confident at centre-half - I’m always facing the ball and can get involved, but I’ve also got a midfield-type figure which helps me drive into the box so I can tick both boxes. I’m enjoying playing my football again - ever since the Bradford game, and having my son, I’ve found some good form which is important for me and my confidence.
“When I play at the back we tend to keep a lot of clean sheets and I enjoy it in midfield because I have licence to go forward and express myself. But I can never take it for granted to be playing in this team with these lads, and for this club.”
Clough’s major injury concern is James Wallace, who was withdrawn in the derby-day win over Doncaster at the Keepmoat last Saturday and missed the midweek FA Cup win over Crewe.
Ryan Flynn gave Clough some more food for thought by scoring both goals, but Marc McNulty and Michael Higdon are still out with facial and hamstring injuries respectively.