David Weir admitted football can be a harsh mistress after watching Preston North End condemn his Sheffield United team to its fifth consecutive League One defeat, writes James Shield.
But, having reviewed DVD footage of a match which many observers felt did not produce a fair outcome, the former Scotland international remains convinced he can elicit a change of fortune.
Yes, Weir acknowledged, United’s position towards the foot of the table unacceptable. What it does not do, he insisted ahead of this weekend’s visit to Wolverhampton Wanderers, is reflect the progress being made behind the scenes at Bramall Lane.
“It’s not nice getting beat,” Weir told The Star. “And I’m not going to shy away from that because it’s the over-riding feeling.
“Genuinely, though, there are so many things that the boys are doing right.
“I honestly thought we were the better team (against Preston). We created the majority of the chances and put so much in.
“The lads gave everything they had but, at the moment, they are not getting their rewards.
“This can be a cruel game and at the moment it feels very, very cruel. You could see the disappointment on people’s faces in the dressing room afterwards.
“They’ve bought into what we are trying to do and are showing that in terms of their application.”
Weir used the example of Michael Doyle - “he gave so much he almost had to be carried off the pitch at the end” - to illustrate his point that United’s “effort and application” could not be faulted.
“Ultimately, we have to get results,” Weir said. “We know we can’t be where we are.
“The support we’re getting, from the fans and the people here behind the scenes, is excellent. We couldn’t ask for anymore.
“All we want to do is give them something to be happy about and I’m convinced that we can do that.
“Against Preston, we created more, had more of the ball but we didn’t get the win. The boys are giving everything and at the moment they are not getting their rewards for that.”
Ryan Hall, who arrived on emergency loan from Leeds last week, predicted United are “just one win away” from “really taking off” after making his debut three days ago.
“The over-riding message of the season,” Weir added. “Is that we need a result.”