EFL Championship Preview: Sheffield United vs Coventry City

Sheffield United will welcome Coventry City at Bramall Lane in the EFL Championship fixture on Saturday. The home side lost their previous fixture before the international break while the away side enjoyed a victory. Can Sheffield bounce back against Coventry?

Only a single point from their previous three fixtures lands Sheffield United seven points above the relegation zone. They are placed 17th in the Championship with five wins, four draws, and eight losses in 17 matches. As a result, their playoff hopes are now looking bleak. Their defense has been leaking a lot of goals this season, conceding 26 goals so far, a number which is the joint fifth-worse in the league. Sheffield United lost their previous game 1-3 to Blackburn Rovers in the league. Reda Khadra, Ben Brereton, and Ian Carlo Poveda all got on the score sheet for Blackburn and secured the three points for their side. Despite taking the lead early in the first half through Rhian Brewster, the Blades succumbed against Blackburn. Sheffield have now lost successive games at Bramall Lane after winning three of their previous four. They have also failed to keep a clean sheet in their previous eight matches. Slavisa Jokanovic’s side will be looking to bounce back against Coventry and improve their home form. Oli McBurnie will remain unavailable as he is isolated due to Covid related concerns while goalkeeper Robin Olsen looks doubtful to appear as well. Ben Davies is set to return after missing out on the previous two games due to illness.

EFL Championship Preview: Sheffield United vs Coventry City

Sheffield were dominated by the home side in their previous game. Blackburn came from behind to beat the visitors. Brereton had the highest xG in the match, while he also took the joint-highest shots. Norwood made XI passes to the final third.

EFL Championship Preview: Sheffield United vs Coventry City

Sheffield’s poor defensive record is again highlighted by the above chart. They have conceded joint-fifth highest goals in the Championship, while they are also conceding more than a goal per match on an average.

Coventry are enjoying an impressive form in the Championship. They are placed at the fourth spot in the league and remain in a comfortable position in the playoff spot. So far, they have nine wins, three draws, and five losses in 17 games. In their previous game, they secured a brilliant win as Godden scored in the 91st minute to secure three points for his side against Bristol City. They have been inconsistent in the league, losing two and drawing one in their previous five fixtures. Despite their inconsistency, Coventry have a brilliant home record as they have lost just one home game this season. They will be looking to improve their record against the Blades in their upcoming match as Sheffield have three out of their last four meetings. Ian Maatsen is suspended and will remain out of the match while Clarke-Salter is doubtful to make an appearance as well.

EFL Championship Preview: Sheffield United vs Coventry City

Despite having a lower xG, Coventry were able to secure a brilliant victory against Bristol City. Chris Martin had the highest xG in the match, while Callum O’Hare made the most dribbles. Matt Godden took the joint-highest number of shots.

EFL Championship Preview: Sheffield United vs Coventry City

In terms of xG, Coventry are placed fifth in the Championship, while their average xG per match puts them in the fourth spot. They certainly have the potential to move forward and secure positive results.

Predicted XI

Sheffield United (4-2-3-1) – Foderingham; Baldock, Egan, Davies, Stevens; Hourihane, Fleck; Brewster, Gibbs-White, Osborn; Sharp.

Coventry City (3-4-1-2) – Moore; Rose, McFadzean, Hyam; Kane, Hamer, Kelly, Dabo; O’Hare; Gyokeres, Godden.

Prediction

This will be a close game. Coventry have been struggling on the road, while Sheffield are also struggling to find form at home. A draw is a likely scenario.