Sheffield United: First impressions counted for Paddy

Paddy McCarthy could feature against Walsall in the JP Trophy next week � copyright : Blades Sports Photography
Paddy McCarthy could feature against Walsall in the JP Trophy next week � copyright : Blades Sports Photography

Nigel Clough, the Sheffield United manager, has revealed Paddy McCarthy sought reassurances that his unusual travel arrangements would not prove a source of conflict behind the scenes before returning to Bramall Lane on loan, writes James Shield.

The Crystal Palace centre-half, who is poised to begin a second spell with the League One club following tomorrow’s FA Cup tie at Crewe Alexandra, will continue training with Neil Warnock’s side after receiving special dispensation to live at home with his family in the capital.

Confirming McCarthy was based in London throughout his previous spell with United, which ended earlier this month, Clough told The Star: “Paddy asked us whether it would cause a problem when he first agreed to come here because he didn’t want the rest of the lads to think he was t*****g it off. That shows the character of the man and his professionalism too but it wasn’t an issue at all.

“We, as a group of staff, were happy for him to do that because he’s an experienced player who you know is going to be looked after properly and do the right things down there. But we mentioned it to the team and they didn’t have a problem either, especially after they saw the type of performances he was putting in.”

McCarthy, who made five appearances for United after arriving in South Yorkshire five weeks ago, is expected to put pen to paper on another temporary contract, this time lasting until the end of December, before Wednesday’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy quarter-final against Walsall.

Clough, who steered United into the semi-finals of the FA Cup earlier this year, added: “The fact we asked for permission to play Paddy at Crewe goes to show how seriously we are taking the match there. But Neil has him pencilled-in to play for them in the third round, that’s what the Premier League clubs do.

“We’ll ask again, nearer the time, to see what the situation is down there though. You never rule anything out so, we’ll see how things are, then see what may or may not be possible.”

*Twitter: @JamesShield1